Maitland Political – In the Loop: 20 March 2017

20th March 2017

‘May to bosses: give workers more rights’ – The Times

Firms that use self-employed workers to avoid paying sickness, pension and maternity benefits are facing a government crackdown. A review commissioned by Theresa May is expected to conclude later this year that a growing number of companies are abusing the law by taking on supposedly self-employed workers for jobs previously carried out by salaried staff. The review is understood to have found evidence of companies asking potential employees to incorporate themselves as sole traders rather than being taken on the payroll. The problem is prevalent in the delivery and technology service sectors, but ministers fear that the practice is spreading to more conventional parts of the economy. A final report is expected to be sent to Mrs May in June and government sources suggested last night that she would back its recommendations.

‘Theresa May is warned of looming battle over devolution’ – The Guardian

Theresa May will face demands from the leaders of the UK’s devolved governments to radically rethink her approach to the union as she begins a four-nation tour before beginning Britain’s exit from the EU. Downing Street said the visits, which will begin on Monday in Swansea with the Welsh first minister, Carwyn Jones, would ensure the government was “engaging and listening to people from right across the nation” before triggering article 50. Jones warned there was a battle looming over granting greater devolved powers, ‘If they are not careful, people’s sense of disengagement with Brussels will simply attach itself to London’ Jones commented.

‘George Osborne faces grilling from grassroots Tories after becoming Evening Standard editor’ – The Telegraph

George Osborne is to be questioned by grassroots Conservatives I his constituency amid anger over his decision to accept a job as the editor of the London Evening Standard. Mr Osborne’s decision to take a job at the Evening Standard has divided activists, with some backing the move but others concerned that he will not have enough time to represent constituents. Nicky Morgan, former Education Secretary, praised the move and said he will be the “voice of the Liberal Conservative party”. Ruth Davidson, leader of the Conservatives in Scotland, became the most senior Tory over the weekend to criticise the move as she cast doubt on whether Osborne could perform six jobs.

‘Whitehall puts finishing touches to long Brexit legislative agenda’ – The Financial Times

Theresa May’s government will need to enact up to 15 new bills and thousands of pages of secondary legislation in addition to a centrepiece great repeal bill over the next two years, according to new research on how Brexit will happen. As the prime minister prepares to trigger Article 50 next week, Whitehall officials are putting the finishing touches to a wide-ranging legislative agenda that needs to be on the statute book by the time Britain leaves the EU in 2019. Jill Rutter, of the Institute for Government, commented, ‘Whitehall is about to enter a much more intense phase…Ideally, you would run the negotiation, see what comes out of it and then give yourself time to implement the results. But the sudden legal change at the moment Britain leaves the EU means a lot has to be in place in the next two years. It also raises all sorts of delicate questions, such as when departments should commit to spending money on new systems.’

‘Tim Farron tells centrist Tories: Defect to the Lib Dems or lose to us at next election’ – Politics Home

Liberal Democrat leader, Tim Farron, has said Tory MPs are now ‘the cheerleaders of a government that is as anti-refugees as Nigel Farage. Addressing delegates at his party’s spring conference in York, Mr Farron cited the defeat of former Tory Zac Goldsmith to Lib Dem Sarah Olney in December as a warning to Theresa May. He also took aim at Labour’s conduct adding, ‘the Tories are destroying your post-war legacy while you are busy destroying yourselves.’


On Manoeuvres

must investigate how post-Brexit powers can boost Northern Ireland tourism, according to a report by the Northern Ireland affairs committee.

Up to 15 new bills could be required to deliver Brexit, according to the Insitutute for Government.

9.00am Greg Clark, the business secretary, speaks at a Policy Exchange conference on the industrial strategy.

Midday John Hayes, a transport minister, speaks on driverless cars at the all-party parliamentary group for design and innovation.

12.30pm How will new mayors work with Whitehall to improve prospects for their city-regions? – IfG event.


Westminster Bubble

House of Commons

2.30pm Education questions.

Prisons and Courts Bill – 2nd reading.

Adjournment: effect of the roll-out of universal credit in the Highlands (Drew Hendry).

Westminster Hall

4.30pm E-petition 166847 relating to the cost of car insurance for young people (Steve Double).

Select Committees

11.05am Welsh affairs: Farmers’ Union of Wales and National Farmers’ Union Cymru on agriculture in Wales post-Brexit.

1.15pm Scottish affairs: Damian Green, the work and pensions secretary, Mary Pattison, official for Scottish devolution programme at DWP, Angela Constance MSP, cabinet secretary for social security, Stephen Kerr, director of social security, Scottish government, on inter-governmental co-operation on social security.

2.00pm European Scrutiny: Sir Tim Barrow, UK representative to the EU, and David Jones, the Brexit minister, on Brexit.

2.05pm Transport: Pete Moorey, from Which?, Anthony Smith from Transport Focus, Jacqueline Starr from Rail Delivery Group, Joanna Whittington from the Office of Rail and Road, Paul Maynard, the transport minister, on rail compensation.

4.00pm Public Accounts: Chris Wormald, permanent secretary of the Department of Health, Professor Keith Willett, medical director for acute care, NHS England, Miles Scott from NHS Improvement and Rod Barnes from Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust, on ambulance services study.

House of Lords

2.30pm Oral questions on Age UK’s report on the state of social care; impact of any hospital closures resulting from the implementation of sustainability and transformation plans on accident and emergency; government’s programme for negotiating the UK’s exit from the EU, and assessment of recent developments in Syria

Digital Economy Bill.


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@PickardJE – Phrases you weren’t using this time last year: Customs Union Kompromat Bigly Chicken Coup You Are Fake News Red White & Blue Brexit Macron