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markspringettCllr - Chelmsford District (B) Date posted: 29 May 2013 14:21
JohnRandallMP - Uxbridge and South Ruislip Date posted: 27 Nov 2011 10:16
Thank you for your recent email about the HS2 proposal.
I notice that some of you have already contacted me directly about the HS2 proposals. If you have not and would like a copy of my response that I sent to the consultation please email directly on randallj@parliament.
There are many elements of the proposed route of HS2 that cause me real concern not least the dramatic and devastating effect on many Hillingdon residents as well as facilities in the Borough. I also share the concerns of those elsewhere about the effect on the Chilterns area of outstanding natural beauty. I am working closely with the London Borough of Hillingdon which is like me is opposed to the route.
I noticed that many of the concerns that I raised in my submission are echoed in the recent report of the Transport Select Committee and I hope that the Government will look carefully at those points and reconsider their plans.
The Government’s response should be announced before Christmas.
With kind regards
CarolineLucasMP - Brighton, Pavilion Date posted: 27 Sep 2011 04:47
The voting system at Westminster is outdated and inefficient. An electronic voting system would make far better use of MPs' time; just queuing up to vote accounts for around 30,000 pounds a week in MPs' salary costs.
In the last Parliament there were over 1200 votes.
I wrote a report entitled 'The Case for Parliamentary Reform'(http://bit.ly/nzf8Pq) calling for electronic voting and other changes last year. The important benefits of backbenchers meeting Members of the Government in the voting lobbies does not have to be lost if an e-voting system were adopted.
My suggestion is that MPs would still have to go to the Chamber, but they would do this at a specified time and vote on a number of amendments in sequence with a handheld electronic device, instead of trooping through the Lobbies for every single amendment.
Making the process of casting votes less time-consuming would make it possible for MPs to vote on more aspects of a Bill. This means the public would have a clearer record upon which to hold MPs to account.
A system which inherently discourages voting on the specifics of the Bill requires less thought from those who are charged with passing the legislation. Speeding up voting should help to address this problem.
We have to shake off the image of the “old boys’ club” and drag Westminster into the 21st century - well done Digital Democracy on your welcome campaign!
Caroline Lucas MP
PeterBottomleyMP - Worthing West Date posted: 26 Sep 2011 09:11
NickyMorganMP - Loughborough Date posted: 12 Sep 2011 10:23
I am continuing to fight for parents, making regular contact with the Leicestershire County Council regarding this decision and its future plans.
Withdrawal of free bus passes for school transport between Sileby and Humphrey Perkins School, Barrow upon Soar.
"Work has taken place to remove overhanging vegetation and to maintain the full available width of the path on the north-east side of Barrow Road. We have undertaken to revisit the site to ensure that it is up to standard and I am happy to agree that it will be visited in November, after the clocks have changed.
The County Council's Scrutiny Panel spent some time debating the issue of the specification or otherwise of a minimum width for walking routes. It noted, amongst other things, that this is not the practice elsewhere in the country, with the good reason that minor pinch points that are perfectly manageable could render an entire route unavailable. Trained staff are required to use their judgement as to the availability of the route under assessment, which includes the ability to deal with localised narrow points. Staff do indeed fail routes which they consider unsuitable and they are experienced in applying their judgement. This includes assessments of access roads to industrial estates as well as more conventional side roads.
The original route assessment was from the King Street junction and it is our intention to repeat that. There is a pedestrian crossing of High Street that caters for the needs of those living on Cossington Road.
I will let you know the results of the repeat visit when I have them."
I will endeavour to keep the Digital Democracy followers of this discussion updated as soon as further information comes to hand.
ChiOnwurahMP - Newcastle upon Tyne Central Date posted: 10 Sep 2011 13:11
TobyPerkinsMP - Chesterfield Date posted: 6 Sep 2011 12:58
Thank you for contacting me about the Tory-led government's decision not to award the contract for the Thameslink rolling stock to Bombardier, who would have built these trains in Britain.
I apologise for the delay in replying but can assure you that I have been working to bring pressure to bear on the Government to support employees of Bombardier since the Secretary of State for Transport awarded the contract to a German company.
Tomorrow the Transport Select Committee will be hearing further representations on the decision to award the contract to Siemens, and I hope that they will also add their voice to the growing calls on the Secretary of State for Transport to re-assess his decision.
Bombardier is the only company that designs, builds, maintains and exports trains from the UK and the loss of this contract has led directly to the announcement of job losses and the company’s decision to review its entire UK operations. Losing the last train manufacturing site in Derby will have knock-on effects on the wider economy.
UNITE the Union have estimated that around 125 companies within the supply line to Bombardier will be affected by this crass decision and many hundreds and even thousands of jobs will be lost in the Derbyshire area. Today I spoke on Radio Sheffield on the wider implications of this report in an attempt to keep up the pressure on the government.
The government’s claim to want to support the British manufacturing that is vital for jobs and growth has been exposed as nothing more than a sham. Having already scaled back Labour’s planned orders for new trains thanks to their decision to cut too far and too fast, they have now passed up the opportunity to boost British manufacturing and help secure the jobs and growth the economy needs.
It was perfectly possible for Ministers to review this procurement and ensure that the wider impact on the region and UK economy was taken into account before awarding the contract. For example, the previous government ordered a review into the Intercity Express programme after having announced the preferred bidder. In fact a crucial procurement document makes it very clear that the Secretary of State could have made changes at any time:
"The issue of this Invitation to Tender in no way commits the Secretary of State to award the Thameslink Rolling Stock Programme to any person or party. The Secretary of State reserves the right to terminate the competition, to award the Thameslink Rolling Stock Programme without prior notice, to change the basis, the procedures and the timescales set out or referred to in this document, or to reject any or all Proposals and to terminate discussions with any or all Bidders at any time. Nothing in this Invitation to Tender should be interpreted as a commitment by the Secretary of State to award the Thameslink Rolling Stock Programme to a Bidder."
The government could have worked harder with Bombardier to ensure that they were in pole position to win this contract. They could have questioned Siemens track record in being able to supply and they could have used the fact that the company have been found guilty of corruption elsewhere in the world and were banned from supplying the World Bank for two years as a result.
If the government are serious about creating a private sector led recovery with a strong manufacturing sector that is competitive and profitable then I believe we must do more to ensure that British manufacturers are better placed to secure the orders that enable them to create and sustain jobs in Britain.
That’s why Labour has called on the government to review its decision and do everything possible to ensure that the Thameslink rolling stock contract benefits Britain’s manufacturing sector and the wider economy. We will continue to keep up the pressure on Ministers on this issue.
TOBY PERKINS MP
Labour Member of Parliament for Chesterfield
Shadow Minister for Children and Families
AlanBeithMP - Berwick-upon-Tweed Date posted: 30 Aug 2011 03:48
Thank you for all your comments. As you may know I attended a meeting on Holy Island last week which was organised by the local Liberal Dmeocrat Councillor, Dougie Watkin.
PhilWilsonMP - Sedgefield Date posted: 10 Aug 2011 14:40
the arguement on fossil fuels is so out of date only 19% efficiency by wind turbines in Co.
Millions of concrete including piling needed for this unstable land thousands of vehicular move,ments over 3 years of construction all habitat wiped out to reach one set of 3/4 proposed turbines 2 miles of concrete road needed Crazy the most subsidies form of energy because government has this stupid obsession to reach EU targets when nuclear of gas fired turbines will do the job without destroying the environment
PhilWilsonMP - Sedgefield Date posted: 10 Aug 2011 14:30
those most affected will see a 30% immediate reduction in the value of their properties for which no compensation will be forthcoming The community payment or bribe should only be available to those effected not other cashing in on their misfortune
PhilWilsonMP - Sedgefield Date posted: 10 Aug 2011 13:18
Wake up, smell the coffee. Eon are ripping off customers and the government by increasing our bills and taking massive subsidies.
CatherineMcKinnellMP - Newcastle upon Tyne North Date posted: 9 Aug 2011 04:05
I do share concerns that in these times of austerity, and in the face of some of the most significant cutbacks to public spending ever seen, money should only be spent on refurbishment of Ministers' dwellings when absolutely necessary.
It is also important (security issues allowing) that the spending of public money is transparent, and I therefore support requests for the Prime Minister to be more open about where public money has been spent on the refurbishment and renovation of Downing Street – acknowledging that this is a Grade I listed building, which will always require a certain level of maintenance and repair.
Catherine McKinnell MP
Newcastle upon Tyne North
CatherineMcKinnellMP - Newcastle upon Tyne North Date posted: 28 Jul 2011 06:00
I have been particularly concerned that the Government seems intent on spending up to £3billion on a rushed, unnecessary and top-down restructure at a time when the NHS is England is set to see a £1.2billion funding shortfall in the next year, and frontline staff are already being cut.
It is for all of these reasons that I voted against the Health and Social Care Bill at Second Reading on 31st January, and voted in favour of the following Motion tabled by Labour’s Shadow Health team as part of the Opposition Day debate on NHS reorganisation on 16th March:
"That this House supports the founding principles of the National Health Service (NHS); therefore welcomes the improvements patients have seen in the NHS and supports steps further to ensure the NHS is genuinely centred on patients and carers, achieves quality and outcomes that are among the best in the world, refuses to tolerate unsafe care, involves clinicians in decision-making and enables healthcare providers to innovate, improves transparency and accountability, is more efficient and gives citizens greater say; recognises however that all of those policies and aspirations can be achieved without adopting the damaging and unjustified market-based reorganisation that is proposed, and already being implemented, by the Government; notes the strength of concerns being raised by independent experts, patient groups and professional bodies about the Government's NHS reorganisation; further notes the similar concerns expressed by the Liberal Democrat Party spring conference; and therefore urges the Government to halt the implementation of the reorganisation and pause the progress of the legislation in order to re-think their plans and honour the Prime Minister's promise to protect the NHS."
The announcement by the Health Secretary that he proposed to ‘pause, listen and engage with all those who want the NHS to succeed’ was therefore welcome, but only on the basis that he genuinely intended to take on board the views of the millions of people across the country who have very serious concerns about his proposals. However, this should not have meant simply continuing with the same proposals, but more slowly. Nor should it have just involved finding a different way of ‘presenting’ the same plans. I therefore wrote to both the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister to express my opposition to the Government’s proposals for NHS reform, urging them to totally re-think these plans as part of the ‘pause’.
As you may know, the Prime Minister has since announced some ‘concessions’ on his Government’s proposals, but I believe these to be totally unsatisfactory as they still leave in place the essential elements of the Conservatives’ long-term plans to create a full-scale market within the NHS, as well as risking the breaking up of the NHS as a national, public service. Indeed, I believe that the Government’s proposals are only serving to undermine our health service and I will therefore continue to oppose the Coalition’s plans for reforming the NHS throughout the Parliamentary process.
Catherine McKinnell MP
Newcastle upon Tyne North