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Scotland Act 1998

Details of Provisions

Subsection (1) provides that the first regional member seat within a region is allocated to the registered political party or individual with the highest regional figure, as determined by section 7.  This will not necessarily be the party with the highest total of regional votes since account must be taken of the number of seats already won in the constituency ballots.  A worked example is given below.

Subsection (2) provides that the second and subsequent seats for the region are allocated to the party or individual candidate with the highest regional figure calculated in accordance with section 7(3).  When a party gains a seat, its regional figure is recalculated to ensure that the corrective aspect of the system continues to apply.

Subsection (3) provides that an individual candidate who has been returned as a constituency member or as a regional member should be disregarded from further calculations.

Subsection (4) provides for regional member seats allocated to parties to be filled by candidates in the order in which they appear in the party list.

Subsection (5) provides that, for the purposes of this section and section 10 (regional vacancies) any person in a party’s list who is returned as a member of Parliament shall be treated as ceasing to be in the list, even if the return is void.

Subsection (6) provides that, if a party’s regional list has been used up because of the allocation of regional seats and election of constituency members included on the list, the party will be excluded from further calculations.

Subsection (7) deals with a situation where two or more parties or individual candidates have the same regional figure and effectively provides that in that event a seat shall be allocated to each party or, as the case may be, individual.  Section 12(2)(f) enables an order under section 12 to modify section 8(7) “to ensure the allocation of the correct number of seats for the region”.  Rule 63 in Schedule 2 of the Scottish Parliament (Elections etc.) Order 1999 (S.I. 1999/787) (“the Elections Order”) amends subsection (7) to deal with the situation where the application of section 8 (7) would require the return of too many candidates.  As modified, subsection (7) provides that where the application of subsection (7) would result in the return of too many candidates for the region, subsection (8) will apply.

Subsection (8), inserted by Rule 63 in Schedule 2 of the Elections Order, provides that in the situation where subsection (7)(b) applies, then 1 vote will be added to the regional votes given for the relevant party or candidate and the regional figure recalculated.

Subsection (9), also inserted by the Elections Order, provides that where the operation of section (8) would still result in too many seats being allocated, the regional returning officer shall decide between the parties or candidates concerned by lot.

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