Tag Archives: lobbying and transparency bill

Tom Brake MP writes…Liberal Democrats have improved the Lobbying Bill

Yesterday the long, and at times tortuous, journey of the Transparency Bill through Parliament came to an end.  It will shortly receive Royal Assent.  The Bill had many critics, so it is worth reiterating the purpose of the parts of the Bill I was closely involved with as a Minister.

Part 1, sets up a Statutory Register of Lobbyists, to complement the existing regime of quarterly data published by Ministers about which external organisations they meet.  Liberal Democrats have successfully pushed for this data to become much more accessible and useful in future, so that all the data is published …

Posted in Op-eds | 59 Comments

Lord (Paul) Tyler writes… Transparency Bill – Government concessions

Yesterday Lords amendments came to the Commons for consideration. The Government has accepted the principle of my amendment on including Special Advisers (SpAds) in the regime of transparency about who lobbyists get to meet in government. However, the Conservative Party refuses to ‘switch on’ this provision at this stage, and probably for the duration of this Parliament.

The Government therefore brought forward an amendment which will allow Ministers to bring those who meet SpAds into the register of lobbyists, but they will remain out for now. David Cameron says ‘sunlight is the best disinfectant’. Since two of the big lobbying scandals …

Posted in Op-eds | 3 Comments

Lord Paul Tyler writes: An update on the Lobbying bill

The Government’s Transparency Bill is nearly complete.  It is a very different Bill from that introduced to the House of Commons in the autumn.  Full marks to Tom Brake who, while robustly rebuffing the more hysterical accusations about the Bill, has listened, and worked hard inside government to secure a sensible package of improvements.  The first was in the House of Commons, where MPs voted to ensure the definition of non-party campaigning remained the same as for the last thirteen years.  If this were a ‘gagging law’, then so too was Labour’s PPERA of 2000.

In the Lords, we have concentrated …

Posted in Op-eds | 11 Comments

The Independent View: Transparency in Government

This week the Liberal Democrats face a test of their commitment to transparency in government when the House of Lords considers Part 1 of the Transparency of Lobbying, Non Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill. Bizarrely for a Bill with transparency in the title, it will provide the public with less information than we already have under the discredited system of self-regulation.

Last week the BMJ published details of the way the drinks industry had lobbied government to drop the commitment to minimum alcohol pricing including 130 meetings, few of which were in the public domain. This is not about …

Posted in The Independent View | Also tagged | 9 Comments
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