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Written Question
Prorogation
Tuesday 29th October 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Cabinet Office:

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by the Earl of Courtown on 8 October (HL17934), whether they will now answer the question put, namely what assessment they have made of the constitutional and political implications of the Supreme Court ruling that the Government's decision to advise Her Majesty The Queen to prorogue Parliament was unlawful, and therefore the subsequent prorogation was void and of no effect.

Answered by Earl of Courtown - Captain of the Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard (HM Household) (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Lords)

Since the judgment, the Prime Minister requested a prorogation of Parliament from the 8 October ahead of a Queen's Speech which took place on the 14th October. The implication of the Supreme Court judgment was considered in making that decision.


Written Question
Supreme Court: Judges
Tuesday 8th October 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Ministry of Justice:

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether any Supreme Court justices receive financial support from the EU; and if so, how many.

Answered by Lord Keen of Elie

Supreme Court Justices receive no financial support from the EU. The Court’s activities including Justices’ salaries and expenses are financed mainly by Supply voted by Parliament,

contributions from various jurisdictions, court fees and financing from the Consolidated Fund.


Written Question
Prorogation
Tuesday 8th October 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Cabinet Office:

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the constitutional and political implications of the Supreme Court ruling that the Government's decision to advise Her Majesty The Queen to prorogue Parliament was unlawful, and therefore the subsequent prorogation was void and of no effect.

Answered by Earl of Courtown - Captain of the Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard (HM Household) (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Lords)

I refer the noble Lord to the answer given by the Prime Minister to Parliamentary Question PQ290379 on 2 October 2019.


Written Question
Honda: Swindon
Wednesday 29th May 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy:

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether, in their discussions with Honda over the closure of their plant in Swindon, they have raised the possibility of the future use of the site and plant for the large-scale production of electric vehicles; and whether they would consider giving financial support to such a venture.

Answered by Lord Henley

My rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy met with the Honda Executives in London on 18 February, just ahead of Honda’s initial announcement to close its Swindon plant on 19 February. The Secretary of State has chaired a taskforce consisting of local leaders, MPs and trade unions, to provide support to the workforce and businesses who would be affected by the loss of Honda’s plant in Swindon. Through the taskforce we are determined to work together to ensure that Swindon continues its record of attracting investment from advanced manufacturers, maintaining and creating highly skilled jobs that offer fulfilling careers for many years to come. That will include engaging closely with parties interested in future uses of the site in Swindon owned by Honda.

The Government supports the competitiveness of the UK automotive sector via a number of routes. Government has committed £274m to the Faraday Battery Challenge, and circa £80m in the last Budget to the Stephenson Challenge, newly named ‘Driving the Electric Revolution’. Together Government and industry have committed around £1 billion through the Advanced Propulsion Centre to support research, development and commercialisation of the next generation of low carbon technologies, keeping the UK at the cutting edge of low carbon automotive innovations. Innovate UK, part of UK Research and Innovation provides R&D support across a range of technology themes including low carbon, materials and manufacturing; and connected and autonomous vehicles.


Written Question
Police: Recruitment
Wednesday 20th March 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Home Office:

To ask Her Majesty's Government what would be the net cost to (1) central government, and (2) local authorities, of providing an additional 20,000 police officers in the UK.

Answered by Baroness Williams of Trafford - Captain of the Honourable Corps of Gentlemen-at-Arms (HM Household) (Chief Whip, House of Lords)

The Home Office has responsibility for policing in England and Wales, where the size and composition of the police workforce is a local decision for Police and Crime Commissioners, working with chief officers. Policing in Scotland and Northern Ireland is a devolved matter.

The police funding settlement for 2019/20 in England and Wales increases funding by around £970 million, including additional funding for pensions, and income from council tax. PCCs have been setting out their plans to use this additional funding to recruit around 2700 additional police officers and 600 staff.


Written Question
M4: Lighting
Wednesday 13th March 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Department for Transport:

To ask Her Majesty's Government whether overhead lighting on the M4 motorway will be replaced following the M4's conversion to a smart motorway between junctions 3 and 8/9; and whether that lighting will be extended to junction 12.

Answered by Baroness Sugg

Highways England is currently assessing the need for lighting on the M4 J3 to J12 smart motorway scheme against current standards. Where lighting is required it will be retained and junctions will remain lit. If any lighting is proposed to be removed from the scheme, Highways England will need to consult with affected local authorities as part of the process of discharging requirements set in the planning approval (Development Consent Order).


Written Question
Taxation: EU Action
Wednesday 6th March 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the HM Treasury:

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Statement by Lord Bates on 19 January (HLWS1308) concerning the Economic and Financial Affairs Council meeting of 12 February, what position was taken by the UK during the exchange of views on the European Commission’s proposal to move to qualified majority voting in EU taxation policy.

Answered by Lord Bates

As set out in an explanatory memorandum dated 5 February 2019,[1] the government does not support the use of qualified majority voting (QMV) in the field of taxation and this remains the case following the recent Economic and Financial Affairs Council (ECOFIN) discussion.

[1] http://europeanmemoranda.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/files/2019/02/Scan.pdf


Written Question
EU Staff: Pensions
Wednesday 20th February 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the HM Treasury:

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Bates on 28 January (HL12856), whether the €9.75 billion in pensions liabilities are part of the estimated £39 billion settlement or additional to it.

Answered by Lord Bates

The financial settlement negotiated with the European Union includes the value of pensions liabilities incurred while a member state.

We have reached a fair financial settlement with the EU, honouring commitments we made during our period of membership, and have ensured a fair deal for UK taxpayers. The Government was able to secure a number of successes in negotiations that reduced the size of the settlement from what it might have been under the Commission’s original proposal including provisions that enable future simplifications for the period over which we pay for pensions.


Written Question
EU Presidency
Monday 4th February 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Department for Exiting the European Union :

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the EU General Affairs Council meeting on 8 January, what assessment they have made of the presidency's priorities and focus on building a more cohesive EU.

Answered by Lord Callanan - Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)

The Government is supporting Romania in its first Presidency of the Council of the European Union. We welcome the broad theme of cohesion which will underpin the Romanian Presidency’s four planned priority areas. On the priority of Converging Europe, the UK Government welcomes the Presidency’s prioritisation of these proposals and believes in the benefits of an open, flexible market with a regulatory framework that reflects the dynamic nature of the digital economy and increases cross-border e-commerce. On a safer Europe, the UK is unconditionally committed to ensuring European security. We support the Presidency’s desire to implement plans to counter terrorism, deliver on the European Agenda on migration and promote cyber-security. On Europe, a stronger global actor, the UK Government looks forward to cooperating with the Presidency on its work with the Western Balkans and the Eastern Partnership regions. Finally, on a Europe of common values, the UK places great importance in supporting the countering of misinformation.


Written Question
Sleeping Rough: Immigrants
Monday 4th February 2019

Asked by: Lord Stoddart of Swindon (Independent Labour - Life peer)

Question to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing & Communities:

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the impact of immigration on the increase in rough sleeping in England since 2013.

Answered by Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth

The Government has not made an assessment of the impact of immigration on the number of people sleeping rough.

However, national street counts and intelligence driven estimates of people sleeping rough are conducted every year in autumn and these take account of an individual’s nationality. The most recent data (for England) is from the autumn 2018 annual street count and estimate, which returned a total figure of 4,677 rough sleepers in England - showing a fall in numbers for the first time in 8 years - 1,048 of these self-reported as non-UK nationals.

To tackle this issue, we are making £5 million of funding available to help local areas support non-UK national rough sleepers off the streets. This funding will complement the projects which we have already funded through the £100 million Controlling Migration Fund (CMF) for local authorities to work with non-UK nationals who sleep rough. Further CMF funding allocations will be announced shortly.

This Government is committed to reducing homelessness and rough sleeping. No one should ever have to sleep rough. That is why last summer we published the cross-government Rough Sleeping Strategy which sets out an ambitious £100 million package to help people who sleep rough now, but also puts in place the structures that will end rough sleeping once and for all. The Government has now committed over £1.2 billion to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping over the spending review period.