This note looks at the development of the Railways Pension Scheme set up in 1994 following the privatisation of British Rail
When will it be debated?
Tuesday 1 December 2015
What is it?
This is the fifth round of instructions to the HS2 Select Committee and the fifth set of what are called ‘additional provisions’. The Committee explains:
- As members of that Select Committee we have had the power to amend the Bill; by limiting the powers it gives and by inserting new powers. Where the latter amendments might themselves cause particular adverse effect, they can be petitioned against. So far there has been one round of such ‘additional provisions’ to the Bill, in that case initiated by its Promoter (the Department for Transport) and largely concerned with reaching accommodation with petitioners from various parts of the line. Another round, which will include some of the matters on which we have made suggestions or recommendations, is expected after the general election. [HC 338, para 8]
In effect, the instruction will allow the Committee to consider amendments to the scheme to accommodate the requirements of landowners and occupiers and changes to the design of the works authorised by the Bill.
Those affected will be able to petition against these amendments, as they have been able to do against the initial scheme. The Committee will hear those petitions and then decide whether the amendments should be added to the Bill.
What parts of the route will be affected?
In summary, it gives the Committee the power to consider amendments relating to the requirements of landowners and occupiers and changes to the design of the works authorised by the Bill, in:
- the London Borough of Hillingdon;
- the parishes of Denham, Grendon Underwood, Hogshaw and Stone with Bishopstone and Hartwell in the County of Buckinghamshire;
- the parish of Greatworth in the County of Northamptonshire;
- the parish of Middleton in the County of Warwickshire;
- the parishes of Drayton Basset, Hints with Canwell, Longdon and Weeford in the County of Staffordshire; and
- the parish of Bickenhill in the Metropolitan Borough of Solihull
What are the cost implications?
It is not clear whether costs would increase as a result of the changes. In the past the Government has maintained that changes made as a result of other Additional Provisions, including at Euston, would not lead to an increase and that many changes “come at no additional cost, some actually produce small savings and others are absorbed by the contingency set aside at the outset specifically for the purpose of addressing petitioner issues”. [HC Deb 15 September 2015, c999]
Has this happened before?
Yes – and it will likely happen again as the Committee continues to consider the route.
The fourth instruction to the Committee – and third and fourth sets of additional provisions – was debated in the House of Commons on Tuesday 15 September 2015.
What happens next?
The final document outlining the proposed amendments to the scheme will be published after the debate. This is the document on which any submissions on the petitioning process can be made. In addition, a supplementary environmental statement will also be deposited.
Department for Transport/HS2 Ltd., High Speed Rail (London – West Midlands) Additional Provision 5: explanatory note, 23 November 2015
HC Library, Railways: HS2 Phase 1, SN316, 3 November 2015
HS2 Select Committee, First Special Report of Session 2014–15, HC 338, 26 March 2015
Department for Transport, Promoter’s Response to the Select Committee’s First Special Report of Session 2014-15, 4 June 2015
HC Library, High Speed Rail (London-West Midlands) Bill 2013-14, RP14-24, 22 April 2014
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