Nicola Sturgeon to move away from indyref2 with 'relaunch'

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Nicola Sturgeon is planning a ‘relaunch’ of her government in response to the SNP’s disappointing general election result, according to reports.

The First Minister and her advisers are said to be considering a series of ‘radical’ policies on local government, the economy and the environment in an attempt to shake off perceptions that she has been preoccupied with the push for a second independence referendum.

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Last month Ms Sturgeon abandoned a timetable that could have seen indyref2 take place as early as autumn 2018, and delayed Holyrood legislation on a second referendum.

However, she said a new vote on Scotland’s future would be considered once the UK’s Brexit deal was done.

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The Times reported that new policies would seek to “reinvigorate” the SNP. There has also been speculation about a possible cabinet reshuffle that was reported to have been planned for the spring, before it was delayed due to the election.

Plans are set to be unveiled when MSPs return from their summer recess, according to the report.

They are said to include plans for greater devolution at a local level, handing powers currently held by councils to community councillors or other local groups.

Ministers are not thought to be considering merging any of Scotland’s 32 local authorities.

Plans are also said to include new measures to boost energy efficiency of homes, and curb the use of diesel engine vehicles in cities.

Last month Ms Sturgeon told MSPs: "Of course any government after ten years needs to take stock and to refresh. Over this summer, as we prepare our next programme for government and our budget for the year ahead, that is exactly what we will do.

"We will set out afresh our vision for the country that we lead, together with the creative, imaginative, bold and radical policies that, as far as is possible within the current powers that are available to us, will help us to realise that bold, ambitious vision for Scotland."