The Scottish Tories have written to the country’s highest civil servant to protest against the appointment of a minister for independence.
To write Speaking to Permanent Secretary John Paul Marks on Friday, Scottish Tory Constitution spokesman Donald Cameron said no money should be spent on Scottish independence in light of the High Court’s ruling last year that the Scottish Parliament has no power to hold another referendum.
This is not an appropriate use of taxpayers’ money as it is not an area where the Scottish Government can pursue any policies that have the power to deliver results.
“This is not an appropriate use of taxpayers’ money as it is not an area where the Scottish Government can implement any policy that has the power to perform,” he said.
Mr Cameron went on to say it would be “reasonable” for the Permanent Secretary to “formally object to such a spending proposal”, before asking Mr Marks if he had done so and then being rejected.
“I consider this matter to be of great public interest, not least given the money that taxpayers are spending on this appointment,” he added.
Mr Hepburn was appointed to the post on Wednesday – which, when combined with his MSP salary, will earn him £98,000 a year.
Asked on Thursday what his responsibilities would be, the Prime Minister said, “To become independent, he will work closely, as you can imagine, with Angus Robertson.”
He added: “He will work across and alongside the party to ensure we are in the best possible position to advance the cause of independence.”