This House of Commons Briefing Paper provides information on ministerial residences including their allocation, financial arrangements and hospitality rules as well as historical notes on each residence.

The Ministerial Code states that when Parliament is in Session, the most important Ministerial announcements should be made in Parliament. However there have been occasions when, for whatever reason, announcements have not been delivered in Parliament first. Often in such cases the Speaker has made a statement to the House deprecating what has happened and sometimes calling on the minister concerned to account for his/her actions.

  • Research Briefing

    The Localism Bill 2010-11 was introduced in the House of Commons on 13 December 2010. This Paper summarises the local government and community empowerment sections of the Bill. Aspects of the Bill relating to planning, housing and London are summarised in Research Paper 11/03. The Bill is due to receive its second reading in the House of Commons on 17 January 2011.

  • Research Briefing

    This is a report on the House of Commons Committee Stage of the Bill. It complements Research Paper 10/63 which was prepared for Commons Second Reading. The Bill gives effect to the Coalition Government’s commitment to stop the restructuring of councils in Norfolk, Suffolk and Devon. Specifically, it would prevent implementation of any of the existing proposals for single-tier local government made under the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007. No amendments were made to the Bill in committee.

  • Research Briefing

    The Bill attempts to strengthen the social enterprise business sector and make the concept of ‘social value’ more relevant and important in the placement and provision of public services. New duties will be placed upon central and local government authorities to publish explicit strategies for supporting these values and the public procurement process will need to reflect and measure them. This Paper was completed before a final version of the Bill was published.

  • Research Briefing

    The Bill gives effect to the Coalition Government’s commitment to stop the restructuring of councils in Norfolk, Suffolk and Devon. Specifically the Bill would prevent implementation of any of the existing proposals for a single-tier local government structure made under the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007. The Bill completed its passage through the House of Lords and was introduced into the House of Commons on 11 October 2010. This briefing was prepared to inform the Second Reading debate on the Bill.

  • Research Briefing

    The Bill seeks to amend the 2007 Act by setting a deadline for the Secretary of State to initiate the next round of proposals for enhancing the sustainability of local communities from local authorities under the Act. It provides for regulations to be made specifying the rules for this process. These are also to cover parish council involvement and the role of local petitioning. There is also provision for greater flexibility in decision-making on proposals.

  • Research Briefing

    This paper covers parts 4 to 8 of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Bill [HL]. The Bill implements a number of changes in relation to regional and sub-regional economic development and planning, including: an economic assessment duty for local authorities; a new regional strategy process for English regions outside London; new Local Authority Leaders’ Boards to agree the strategy with Regional Development Agencies; provisions for further sub-regional partnerships through Economic Prosperity Boards and Multi-Area Agreements. The Bill also amends the Housing Grants, Construction and Regeneration Act 1996 in relation to construction contracts with the aim of improving cashflow and the adjudication process in the industry. See also Library Research Paper 09/45, for coverage of parts 1 to 3 of the Bill which relate to community empowerment, housing and Boundary Commission issues.

  • Research Briefing

    This paper covers parts 1 to 3 of the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Bill [HL]. The Bill implements a number of community empowerment measures outlined in the white paper - Communities in Control: real people, real power (Cm 7427). Other provisions concern a) tenants' representation, b) audit of entities connected with local authorities, and c) replacement of the Boundary Committee for England with an independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England. See also Library Research Paper 09/46, for coverage of parts 4 to 8 of the Bill which relate to economic and regional matters and construction contracts.

  • Research Briefing

    The Bill gives legislative effect to the scheme outlined in Business rate supplements: a white paper (Cm 7230). This allows upper-tier local authorities, and the Greater London Authority, to levy a supplement on the business rate in order to fund local economic development projects. Businesses must be consulted and, in certain circumstances, balloted before a rate supplement can be introduced.

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