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Session 2006 - 07
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Supplement to the House of Commons Votes and Proceedings
24 November 2006

SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

PETITION FROM RESIDENTS OF BUCKFASTLEIGH

16th November 2006

To the House of Commons.

The Petition of residents of Buckfastleigh,

Declares that the closure of the TSB bank Buckfastleigh, the last clearing bank in the town, will have a devastating impact on the economy of the town and surrounding area and the many people who rely on these facilities.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urge the Government to introduce legislation to ensure that residents of towns where bank branches have closed still have access to clearing bank facilities.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

PETITION FROM PEOPLE LIVING AROUND THE ST. MARY'S CHURCH CONSERVATION AREA, BENFLEET

20th November 2006

To the House of Commons.

The Petition people living around the St. Mary's Church Conservation Area

Declares that we the residents of Benfleet and surrounding areas object to the proposed demolition of the parade of shops opposite the historic St Mary's Church, in High Road, Benfleet to make way for a new block of four shops with six one bed and nine two bed flats in a two-storey development above the shops with underground parking, on the grounds that the access is unacceptable, there are insufficient parking arrangements, particularly for visitors to those new properties and shops, and consequently the shops and public will suffer, because the bulk of the proposed building would be unacceptably detrimental to the street scene in this sensitive position around the conservation area and because this would put unacceptable additional stress on the existing infrastructure at a sensitive point on the highway and for many other valid planning reasons as set out by the Member of Parliament and the previous Council member for the ward, in their objections to the earlier application which was rejected.

The Petitioners therefore call on the House of Commons to implore the Government to impress upon Castle Point Borough Council, and three Boyce ward councillors in particular, the imperative that the application is decided by members rather than unelected, unaccountable officers, and the need to reject the application on behalf of all residents of Castle Point, who are sick to the back teeth of attempts to overdevelop their community.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

PETITION FROM RESIDENTS OF BIRMINGHAM ROAD, ALDRIDGE

20th November 2006

To the House of Commons.

The Petition of residents of Birmingham Road, Aldridge and others,

Declares that Britain's gardens are under increasing threat of destruction arising from inappropriate and unpopular development with local opinion being disregarded and communities left powerless to prevent the infill of green spaces, with the loss of precious biodiversity, the increased strain on local infrastructure notably with regard to parking and traffic flow, and the resulting change in the fundamental character of neighbourhoods against local wishes.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to bring forward legislation to give stronger protection to gardens in planning law, and to allow elected local councillors to have greater discretion to protect local neighbourhoods.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

PETITION FROM RESIDENTS OF NORTH DORSET

20th November 2006

To the House of Commons.

The Petition of residents of North Dorset,

Declares that the Defence College for Communications and Information Systems located at Blandford camp is a "centre of excellence" that contributes nearly 300 million a year to the local economy and further declares that any proposal to relocate the training facilities by the private sector bidders in the defence training review will have a seriously adverse impact on local employment, skills and the local economy at a time when there is an urgent need for sustainability in rural areas, and in particular in North Dorset.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urge the Government to ensure that the successful bidder maintain, and possibly expand, the existing training base at Blandford camp.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

PETITION FROM MEMBERS OF SOUTH LAKELAND ALZHEIMER'S SOCIETY

22nd November 2006

To the House of Commons.

The Petition of members of the South Lakeland Alzheimer's Society,

Declares that we are outraged by the decision of the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to restrict NHS prescriptions for Alzheimer's drugs. These treatments are proven to provide real benefits to thousands of people at all stages of Alzheimer's disease and cost just 2.50 per person per day.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urge the Secretary of State for Health to ensure that doctors continue to be able to prescribe Alzheimer's drug treatments to patients who can benefit from them.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.


SUPPLEMENT TO THE VOTES AND PROCEEDINGS

Observations by the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on the Petition [24th October] from residents of South Essex and others against any loss of benefits under the Local Government Pension Scheme.

    The Petitioners believe that the LGPS should be amended to provide full protection of existing Scheme members' benefits in line with the other public service pension schemes as provided by the October 2005 Public Services Forum Agreement. However, it has been made clear to all Scheme interests that this is neither legally possible, nor affordable in the LGPS. Contrary to the views expressed by the Petitioners, in a recent judgement the Courts dismissed a UNISON judicial review application which challenged the Government's policy on these particular matters, including the age discrimination arguments put forward by UNISON.

    The reforms of the other public service Schemes are not strictly relevant to the decisions which must be taken for the LGPS which, of course, has its own separate regulatory and financial framework in view of its funded nature and local authority controlled status. Statutory protections have now been provided in new Scheme regulations, with effect from 1st October, in response to concerns about the position of existing members. These are affordable and legal.

    The LGPS in England and Wales is being reformed for the future on the basis of affordability, viability and fairness to taxpayers. Its new benefit structure will directly address the pension needs of existing and future employees both within and around local government. Responses to a consultation exercise on a range of costed options for the Scheme's new benefit structure are now being considered. The Government's intention is to come forward shortly with proposals for a further round of consultations on a preferred way forward. The new-look LGPS is programmed to be operational with effect from 1st April 2008.

20th November 2006



 
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Revised 24 November 2006