Moray MP Douglas Ross said SNP Ministers must “respect the will of parliament” after Holyrood voted to extend business rates relief for the struggling newspaper industry.
A majority of MSPs backed a Scottish Conservative motion yesterday to support local newspapers in response to an announcement from Finance Secretary Kate Forbes that the current 100% relief will be scrapped in March.
Ms Forbes has extended rates relief from April for at least three months for the retail, hospitality, leisure, and aviation sectors at a cost of £185million.
It would cost around £1million more to do the same for newspapers.
Scottish Conservative MP for Moray Douglas Ross said:
“SNP Ministers never tire of saying that the will of parliament must be respected.
“However, that only seems to apply when votes go their way.
“On this occasion, all the opposition parties backed a Scottish Conservative motion to support local newspapers.
“Our local press has played a vital role in communicating public health messages during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“But our media does much more than that. Newspapers hold power to account, and it is our democracy that would suffer if some of these local titles go out of business.
“I hope the Finance Secretary will respect the will of parliament and reconsider this snub to the press.
"I would also urge our local SNP MSP here in Moray, Richard Lochhead, to do the right thing and stand up for local newspapers.”