Dozens of new laws sent to Prince so he could give approval
The Prince of Wales was secretly given a say over dozens of new laws, including those to ban hunting and to introduce the Government’s green deal, the Government has revealed.
A Freedom of Information request disclosed that the Prince has been consulted on an average of three laws every year over the past 11 years. Inall he was consulted on 33 laws over past 11 years, far higher than previously disclosed.
The heir to the Throne is allowed under Britain’s constitution to be consulted on legislation that might affect his private interests.
This relates to the Duchy of Cornwall, which controls financial investment portfolio and land totalling 209 square miles, worth hundreds of millions of pounds. Read more.
Christopher Hope | The Telegraph | 15th February 2013
Illegal use of B&Bs to house homeless soars by 800%
The use of bed and breakfasts to house homeless families beyond the legal time limit has risen by 800% since the coalition took office – with a third of the country’s councils unlawfully placing adults and children in B&Bs for more than six weeks, new figures reveal.
An analysis shows that local authorities across England are now spending on average up to £650 a week to keep people off the streets. Freedom of information requests by Labour to 325 councils, to which 242 responded, reveal that 125 had resorted to placing destitute families in hotel rooms for six weeks or more since April 2010. This figure challenges claims by ministersthat only a “small number” of town halls put families in bed and breakfast accommodation beyond the legal limit.
Charities and councils say a combination of welfare cuts and lack of affordable housing has led to the almost ninefold increase. The latest figures show 900 adults and children had been housed in B&Bs for a month and a half at a time, often sharing a single room without a kitchen or any meaningful storage space. Read more.
Randeep Ramesh | The Guardian | 18th February 2013
Royal Mail managers see bonuses rise by two thirds despite missing mail delivery target
Royal Mail staff saw bonuses rise by almost two thirds last year, despite missing a key first-class delivery target, according to reports.
Managers at the postal operator received a 62 per cent increase in bonuses from £1,674 in 2010-2011 to £2,717 last year.
The rise which is set by rules agreed by minsters, has been criticised by union bosses and Labour, who said that consumers would be ‘dismayed’.
The figures were obtained using Freedom of information laws, although Royal mail does publish information on payouts to directors. Read more.
Mario Ledwith | Daily Mail | 18th February 2013
East Coast rail directors paid six figure salaries
The highest paid director at the East Coast Main Line Company is on a package worth between £161,000 and £180,000, it has emerged.
That director is believed to be Karen Boswell, a former customer services director at First Capital Connect, who moved to run East Coast services in 2009.
Seven other executives at the government-back company received salaries of more than £100,000 – two of which are on a remuneration band that pays between £121,000 and £140,000.
Michael Holden, chief executive of DOR, received a salary of £156,100 for the year to the end of March 2012, a Freedom of Information request by the Press Association disclosed. Read more.
Nathalie Thomas | The Telegraph | 17th February 2013