Coming up in the Lords: 2 – 5 July

It never ceases to amaze me how much members of the House of Lords get done in the ten minutes that Tim Farron suggests they put in each day, and next week is no exception. So, moving swiftly along…

The Crime and Courts Bill continues through its Committee stage, and Days 5 and 6 take place on Monday and Wednesday next week. Regulation of bailiffs, consideration of financial circumstances when levying fines, and the immigration appeals regime will all be debated, with Eric Avebury having indicated his intention to oppose Clause 24, covering appeals against refusal of entry clearance to visit the UK, in its entirety.

Tuesday sees Day 2 of the Committee stage of the Financial Services Bill. Amongst the highlights will be Amendment 35, sponsored by Susan Kramer, John Sharkey and… the Bishop of Durham, which adds greater clarity to the objectives of the proposed Financial Policy Committee. However, I’m afraid that this session will be one for economics policy wonks only.

Meanwhile, the Civil Aviation Bill (Monday and Wednesday) and the Local Government Finance Bill (Tuesday and Thursday) are in Grand Committee, presumably on the basis that they just aren’t quite exciting enough to be on the main stage. I am surprised, as who could think that local government finance is dull…

Oh, sorry about that, fell asleep. But seriously, the Bill will allow local retention of business rates, “incentivising local government to encourage growth through increased business and economic activity”, and allow local authorities to design their own schemes for council tax support, replacing council tax benefit, which has been abolished by the Welfare Reform Bill. Evidently, this is the difficult, technical bit of localism, so expect anguish cries of ‘postcode lottery’. However, there are legitimate questions to be asked regarding the impact on those more deprived areas that benefit currently from the redistribution of the business rate from the centre.

This week’s oral question from a Liberal Democrat this week is from Claire Tyler, on the training and development of civil servants (Monday), whilst Sal Brinton has sponsored a debate on access to water in the Palestinian territories of the West Bank on Tuesday.

* Mark Valladares is married to a member of EU Sub-Committee B, and is known to blog at ‘The View from Creeting St Peter‘.

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2 Comments

  • Chris Jenkinson 29th Jun '12 - 4:00pm

    “This week’s oral question from a Liberal Democrat this week is from Claire Tyler, on the training and development of civil servants (Monday), whilst Sal Brinton has sponsored a debate on access to water in the Palestinian territories of the West Bank on Tuesday.”

    Just to point out that while Lib Dem peers don’t get to initiate every question to government ministers, each “question” is actually a series of questions from peers across the Chamber to the government ministers and there is a question from a Lib Dem backbench peer in every series!

    Chris

  • Tony Greaves 30th Jun '12 - 4:54pm

    Whether a LD peer gets in on a question is a matter of the dymamics of the House: there is an attempt to do so (with some management by the party to make sure someone is lined up) but no guarantee it will happen. Sometimes however more than one LD manages tot get in, though this is less frequent than it was before the massive influx of new members since the last General Election.

    On the other hand there is not just one “LD question” a week. There are four questions each day, Most are tabled a month in advance and it’s first-come-first-served so some weeks there is a spate of questions originating from LDs.

    On Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays the fourth question is a Topical Question. These are tabled two or three days in advance and there is a ballot for the question to be taken each day. LDs manage to get quite a number of these over a session.

    Tony Greaves

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