Requesting a National Audit Office investigation into the LEP following new conflict of interests concerns

nao

I have written in my capacity as the Member of Parliament for North East Cambridgeshire to the Comptroller and Auditor General of the National Audit Office, Sir Amyas Morse, asking for an investigation to be launched into the governance of the Greater Cambridge Greater Peterborough Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and the Cambridge City Deal. I …

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What do you call an aircraft carrier without aircraft?

What do you call an aircraft carrier without aircraft? The Ministry of Defence is currently building two aircraft carriers without knowing which planes will be able to fly from their decks, how many planes will use them, and for how many years there will be no planes using them at all.  This was the remarkable …

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Local Victory as Minister Orders a Road Sign for Thorney Toll Village Hall.

Roads Minister, Mike Penning MP, has confirmed today that a new sign will be installed on the A47 next to Thorney Toll Village Hall. I am delighted to report the good news, which arrived today in a letter from the Minister (included at the base of this post). The letter confirms that the Highways Agency have been instructed to install the …

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World renowned expert set to give talk to local students

Professor Adrian K Dixon, Professor of Radiology at the University of Cambridge, Honorary Consultant Radiologist at Addenbrooke’s Hospital and Master of Peterhouse, the oldest of the Cambridge University colleges, is set to visit the Fens to talk to a selection of pupils from local secondary schools about careers in medicine, applications to Oxford and Cambridge, …

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Minister says once is enough as CRB checks set to change

Costly duplicate Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) checks which cause delay and waste money for local firms are set to be streamlined, following assurances from the Minister for Children and Families.  Given the close proximity of the Norfolk and Lincolnshire borders around Wisbech, and the different regimes for Whittlesey residents working in Peterborough, businesses often find …

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First Friday with Steve Barclay

Some weeks feel like little progress is being made, and then a number of announcements come all at once.  Royal Mail confirmed the Chatteris sorting office will remain open for the foreseeable future, announcing a U-turn from their previous plans.  Thanks go to all the residents who signed the petition, Chatteris Town Council and the …

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Civil Servant Accountability to Parliament: Time for Change?

 Civil servants are accountable to their Minister but are not directly accountable to Parliament.   Ministers rightly account to Parliament for their policy. Only Accounting Officers, usually the Permanent Secretary, have direct accountability to Parliament for the value for money spent by departments. In the case of the Dept for Health for example, this makes just …

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First Friday with Steve Barclay

One of the aims of this Government is to have greater transparency on information so the public are better able to have their say.  A great new tool is the National Crime Maps which has received 45 million visits so far.  Visit www.police.uk and type in your postcode to find out more. Also on law …

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How HMRC allowed Vodafone off the hook on massive tax bill

HMRC allowed Vodafone to route a loan through a series of foreign companies in order to avoid paying UK Corporation Tax running into hundreds of millions of pounds.  In the light of this, the opportunity for the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister to act on their words last week, about large UK companies …

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The questions Lord Turner’s report on RBS raises for Parliament

 The collapse of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) raises a key issue: why have none of its directors faced a regulatory fine for their failures? For the taxpayer, the consequence of the bank’s collapse is stark – our current loss is over £25 billion with more than £45 billion of capital invested.  That pays for …

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