This week in parliament: Week commencing 24 April

This will be a weekly feature where contributor Max Booth outlines the week ahead in parliament.

Monday 24th April

Non-Domestic Rating Bill – Second Reading

This bill proposes:

• Business rates valuations made more frequent, from 3 years to 5 years.

• Business rates improvements relief – meaning that businesses making certain building improvements could be exempt from higher business rates bills for 12 months.

Public Order Bill – Consideration of Lords’ Amendments

This bill proposes:

• Making certain disruptive aspects of protest illegal, such as: locking yourself to property and obstructing roads.

• Court orders aimed at individuals suspected of “serious disorder”.

• Increased police powers to stop and search protesters.

This is a very controversial bill as it specifically aims to target protestors. Introduced by Priti Patel, this bill sparked violent protests in Bristol in March of 2021. The bill specifically names groups such as Extinction Rebellion, Just Stop Oil and Insulate Britain as its reasoning.

Oral Evidence on HS2 Euston Station – Public Accounts Committee

The government recently announced plans to extend HS2 into central London at Euston Station had been paused. Senior figures will give oral evidence including the Department’s for Transport’s chief civil servant, Dame Bernadette Kelly, and the chief executive of HS2, Mark Thurston.

Tuesday 25th April

Opposition Day

The Opposition sets the agenda for debates and votes on an Opposition Day. Currently, Labour is allocated 17 days per parliamentary session, while the SNP is allocated 3. This will be Labour’s 14th allocated day this parliamentary session.

Oral Evidence on the situation in Sudan – Foreign Affairs Committee

A number of people will be giving oral testimony to the Foreign Affairs Committee on the situation in Sudan, including Dame Rosalind Marsden, former EU Special representative for Sudan and former British Ambassador to Sudan.

Wednesday 26 April

Prime Minister’s Question Time

Oral Evidence – Home Affairs Committee

The Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police Sir Mark Rowley will be giving testimony to the Home Affairs Committee.

Oral Evidence – on Minimum Service Levels for Rail – Transport Committee

Mick Lynch, General Secretary of the RMT will be giving testimony on introducing minimum service levels for railways to the Transport Committee.

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