A bonfire of laws

July 02, 2010 11:46 AM

100702 Bonfire Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has announced a bonfire of laws.  The coalition government wants us to recommend the laws which we think should be scrapped.  I suggested a few of the TPA’s ideas on Today yesterday morning.

The idea is to roll back pointless regulation and unnecessary bureaucracy that has accumulated on the statute book.  Ideas submitted in the online consultation will be taken into account in the drafting of a Freedom Bill to be published this autumn.

The website asks three questions:
:: Which current laws would you like to remove or change because they restrict your civil liberties?
:: Which regulations do you think should be removed or changed to make running your business or organisation as simple as possible?
:: Which offences do you think we should remove or change and why?

You can rate ideas already suggested, or add a comment, so there is the opportunity to get a conversation started. 

One of the things we’d like to see go is a range of clauses from the Trade Union and Labour Relations Act 1992.  There is a section in the act that gives trade union representatives the right to paid time off to do union work.   Whilst we are not seeking to remove representatives’ right to have that time for union work, it should not be the case that those in the public sector are paid (from taxpayers’ pockets) whilst taking it.  Funding union reps’ work frees money in the unions’ budgets for other things, and taxpayers are effectively paying for unions to lobby the government.  Unions are planning strikes that will make it harder to get value for money from public services, we should not be paying for time they are spending acting against the interests of hard working taxpayers.  The unions can easily afford to pay representatives, judging by what their leaders are earning.

Other ideas we had on which laws should be repealed:

Identity Cards Act
The government has already said it will scrap ID cards, but only by repealing the whole act can we rest assured that there will be a full abolition of both the cards and the database.  Otherwise the Government may try to only abolish the cards and not the crucial database which underlies them.

Regional Development Agencies Act 1998
The TPA has long criticised RDAs and we would like to see the entire Act repealed.  The Government has said they will get rid of RDAs, but there is a danger that the coalition will simply amend the Act and try to keep a great deal of the function and activities of RDAs, simply under other names.

Northern Rock Plc Transfer Order 2008
Section 18 of this act should go, as a clause within it exempts Northern Rock from Freedom of Information requests. We have spent billions nationalising Northern Rock but this clause forbids taxpayers from finding out where their money goes or how it’s being used.

Add your own ideas of which laws to repeal under this article as a comment, and make sure you head over to the Your Freedom website to formally make your ideas known to the Government.100702 Bonfire Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has announced a bonfire of laws.  The coalition government wants us to recommend the laws which we think should be scrapped.  I suggested a few of the TPA’s ideas on Today yesterday morning.

The idea is to roll back pointless regulation and unnecessary bureaucracy that has accumulated on the statute book.  Ideas submitted in the online consultation will be taken into account in the drafting of a Freedom Bill to be published this autumn.

The website asks three questions:
:: Which current laws would you like to remove or change because they restrict your civil liberties?
:: Which regulations do you think should be removed or changed to make running your business or organisation as simple as possible?
:: Which offences do you think we should remove or change and why?

You can rate ideas already suggested, or add a comment, so there is the opportunity to get a conversation started. 

One of the things we’d like to see go is a range of clauses from the Trade Union and Labour Relations Act 1992.  There is a section in the act that gives trade union representatives the right to paid time off to do union work.   Whilst we are not seeking to remove representatives’ right to have that time for union work, it should not be the case that those in the public sector are paid (from taxpayers’ pockets) whilst taking it.  Funding union reps’ work frees money in the unions’ budgets for other things, and taxpayers are effectively paying for unions to lobby the government.  Unions are planning strikes that will make it harder to get value for money from public services, we should not be paying for time they are spending acting against the interests of hard working taxpayers.  The unions can easily afford to pay representatives, judging by what their leaders are earning.

Other ideas we had on which laws should be repealed:

Identity Cards Act
The government has already said it will scrap ID cards, but only by repealing the whole act can we rest assured that there will be a full abolition of both the cards and the database.  Otherwise the Government may try to only abolish the cards and not the crucial database which underlies them.

Regional Development Agencies Act 1998
The TPA has long criticised RDAs and we would like to see the entire Act repealed.  The Government has said they will get rid of RDAs, but there is a danger that the coalition will simply amend the Act and try to keep a great deal of the function and activities of RDAs, simply under other names.

Northern Rock Plc Transfer Order 2008
Section 18 of this act should go, as a clause within it exempts Northern Rock from Freedom of Information requests. We have spent billions nationalising Northern Rock but this clause forbids taxpayers from finding out where their money goes or how it’s being used.

Add your own ideas of which laws to repeal under this article as a comment, and make sure you head over to the Your Freedom website to formally make your ideas known to the Government.

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