Rural Related Politics - An RSN weekly review

24 February 2020

Below is an RSN review of last week's rural related politics as well as a look forward to the week ahead:


Last week in politics 
(17 February -  23 February)

Parliament had risen for recess last week, it is returning on 24th February.  

On Tuesday 18th, Local Government Secretary Robert Jenrick announced emergency financial assistance for councils affected by Storm Dennis. The Bellwin Scheme will allow local authorities dealing with the impact of the storm to apply to have 100 per cent of the eligible costs they incur reimbursed by the Government. The scheme has been activated for qualifying areas in Nottinghamshire, Leicestershire, Derbyshire, Shropshire, Telford & Wrekin, Worcestershire and Herefordshire. It comes as the Environment Agency issued a record number of flood warnings over the weekend, including at one point a reported six severe flood warnings in England and Wales - meaning there is danger to life.

On Thursday 20th, Digital Secretary Oliver Dowden announced a new £65 million package for 5G trials. The announcement includes £30 million for the Rural Connected Communities (RCC) competition for seven 5G research and development projects across the UK. Nine projects across the country will receive a share of £35 million from the rural and industrial 5G competitions.. Test sites will be set up in Yorkshire, Gwent, Monmouthshire, Orkney, Wiltshire, Nottinghamshire, Dorset, Shropshire and Worcestershire.

This week in politics (24 February -  1 March)
  • On Monday 24th in the House of Lords, Peers will debate issues caused by short-term holiday lets with Baroness Gardner of Parkes.
  • The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Nature will debate the benefits of nature for mental health, along with practical solutions for improving access to these benefits for all.
  • Elsewhere, there will also be a motion on Local Government Finance in England with Robert Jenrick.
  • There will also be oral questions on Housing, Communities and Local Government.

  • On Tuesday 25th, there will be a Westminster Hall debate on special educational needs on the Isle of Wight with Bob Seely.
  • There will also be a debate on the equality of funding for post-16 education with Lloyd Russell-Moyle.
  • In the House of Lords, Peers will debate insulating existing housing in order to contribute to ending fuel poverty and achieving net zero carbon emissions with Lord Teverson.
  • The All-Party Parliamentary Group on Heathrow expansion and regional connectivity will meet.
  • Also on Tuesday, the All-Party Parliamentary Group on flood prevention will have their inaugural meeting.
  • The Lords Science and Technology Committee will hear evidence on Ageing: Science, Technology and Healthy Living. Dame Fiona Caldicott from National Data Guardian, Matthew Gould from Health and Adult Social Care Data in England, Dr Jem Rashbass Executive Director of Master Registries and Data, NHS Digital and Chris Roebuck, Chief Statistician at NHS Digital will give evidence.
  • The All-Party Parliamentary Group on digital skills will explore the impact of technological changes to the workforce, and how marginalised and vulnerable individuals may be at risk of being left behind as technology advances in our society.

  • On Thursday 28th, the House of Lords will debate the impact of delivering 300,000 homes per year by the mid-2020s with Lord Young of Cookham.
  • There will also be the second reading of the Environment Bill.

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