Lobbying Act ‘stifling environment debate’ in election campaign – The Guardian

Posted June 2nd, 2017 in elections, environmental protection, lobbying, news by sally

‘Debate on environmental issues has been stifled in the run-up the general election leaving voters in the dark , opposition parties have claimed, as a result of the Lobbying Act and government determination to avoid criticism over problems such as air pollution.’

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The Guardian, 1st June 2017

Source: www.theguardian.com

Charities may face criminal sanctions as ‘gagging law’ backdated before election – The Guardian

Posted May 22nd, 2017 in charities, elections, legislation, lobbying, news, retrospectivity, sanctions by tracey

‘UK charities face a permanent “chilling effect” on their campaigns after the Electoral Commission said they must declare any work that could be deemed political over the past 12 months to ensure they are not in breach of the Lobbying Act.’

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The Guardian, 21st May 2017

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Ministers back down on rule ‘gagging’ scientists – The Guardian

Posted April 20th, 2016 in freedom of expression, government departments, lobbying, news by sally

‘Ministers have exempted thousands of scientists from a controversial “gagging clause” that would have prevented the academics from trying to influence government on public policy matters.’

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The Guardian, 19th April 2016

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Revealed: the loophole that lets lobbying companies keep their clients a secret – The Independent

Posted April 11th, 2016 in disclosure, lobbying, news, parliament by tracey

‘Lobbying companies working at the heart of Whitehall are exploiting loopholes in transparency legislation that allows them to avoid declaring clients who pay them thousands of pounds to help influence Government policy, The Independent can reveal.’

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The Independent, 10th April 2016

Source: www.independent.co.uk

Jargon-buster: Do you know your PCF from BRF, and your BSB from your Bar Council – The Bar Council

Posted February 22nd, 2016 in barristers, fees, legal profession, licensing, lobbying, news, pro bono work by sally

‘Every year, throughout February and March, Bar Council members have to take part in the Authorisation to Practice process, which involves renewing your practising certificate, updating your professional information and paying your Practising Certificate Fee and Bar Representation Fee.’

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The Bar Council, 19th February 2016

Source: www.barcouncil.org.uk

Charity and Political Lobbying – Cloisters

Posted October 7th, 2015 in charities, elections, lobbying, news by sally

‘In England and Wales an organisation must satisfy the definition of charity under the Charities Act 2011 and must be established for charitable purposes only and subject to the control of the High Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction with respect to charities. There is a list of charitable purposes, which include matters such as the promotion of human rights, but it includes any purposes that may reasonably be regarded as analogous to, or within the spirit of, any of the purposes expressly set out in the Act. All charitable purposes must be for the public benefit.’

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Cloisters, 28th September 2015

Source: www.cloisters.com

We all had a right to see Prince Charles’s letters. But not any more, it seems – The Guardian

‘Downing Street’s decision to publish the second batch of letters that Prince Charles had sent to ministers was unexpected. The government had been preparing to resist the publication of the latest batch, covering the years 2006 to 2009, even though a previous batch, covering 2004 and 2005, was released after a ten-year legal battle with the Guardian.’

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The Guardian, 4th June 2015

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Charities warn ‘gagging law’ stops them campaigning on election issues – The Independent

Posted February 19th, 2015 in charities, elections, freedom of expression, lobbying, news by sally

‘Charities have warned they are being deterred from staging major campaigns on crucial general election issues because of the “chilling” impact of controversial new rules on lobbying.’

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The Independent, 18th February 2015

Source: www.independent.co.uk

European court rejects Geoff Hoon’s human rights complaint – BBC News

Posted December 5th, 2014 in human rights, lobbying, news, parliamentary privilege by sally

‘A parliamentary investigation into the conduct of the former Labour MP Geoff Hoon was justified, according to the European Court of Human Rights.’

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BBC News, 4th December 2014

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Statutory register of government lobbyists will preserve legal professional privilege – OUT-LAW.com

Posted September 19th, 2014 in disclosure, law firms, lobbying, news, privilege by tracey

‘Law firms that lobby the government on behalf of clients will not need to disclose any information protected by legal professional privilege (LPP) when a new statutory register is up and running, the UK government has confirmed.’

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OUT-LAW.com, 18th September 2014

Source: www.out-law.com

Gay bus advert ban probed by High Court – BBC News

Posted July 2nd, 2014 in advertising, appeals, charities, Christianity, homosexuality, lobbying, news by sally

‘A High Court judge is considering whether Boris Johnson acted improperly in banning a bus advert suggesting people could “get over” homosexuality.’

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BBC News, 1st July 2014

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

CA says Prince Charles’ advocacy letters should be produced – UK Human Rights Blog

Posted March 17th, 2014 in appeals, disclosure, freedom of information, lobbying, news, royal family by tracey

‘R (o.t.a Rob Evans) v. Attorney-General, Information Commissioner Interested Party, 12 March 2014.The Court of Appeal (reversing a strong court including the former Lord Chief Justice – see my previous post) has decided that correspondence between the Prince of Wales and various government departments should be released. A Guardian journalist had made a request under the Freedom of Information Act and the Environmental Information Regulations to see these documents. The Upper Tribunal had agreed that they should be disclosed.’

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Uk Human Rights Blog, 16th March 2014

Source: www.ukhumanrightsblog.com

Prince Charles letters: attorney general acted unlawfully, say senior judges – The Guardian

‘Three senior judges have ruled that Dominic Grieve, the attorney general, acted unlawfully when he blocked the publication of letters written by Prince Charles to government ministers. The ruling, led by Lord Dyson, the head of the civil judiciary in England and Wales, paves the way for the release of the letters which reveal how the prince lobbied government ministers to change official policies.’

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The Guardian, 12th March 2014

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014

Posted January 31st, 2014 in elections, legislation, lobbying, third parties, trade unions by sally

Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Act 2014 published

Full text of Act

Source: www.legislation.gov.uk

Theresa Villiers did not break ministerial code report finds – BBC News

Posted December 19th, 2013 in codes of practice, lobbying, ministers' powers and duties, news, reports, transport by tracey

‘Northern Ireland Secretary Theresa Villiers did not breach the ministerial code over a meeting with a lobbyist, an internal No 10 report has found. She had faced allegations that, as a transport minister, she failed to declare a meeting with a representative of a firm seeking to build a railway depot in the Hertfordshire green belt. But a report by the Cabinet Secretary Sir Jeremy Heyward has cleared her.’

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BBC News, 18th December 2013

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Short Cuts – London Review of Books

Posted December 12th, 2013 in bills, charities, elections, lobbying, news by sally

‘The Lobbying Bill – due to complete the Lords committee stage before Christmas – is intended ‘to ensure that people know whose interests are being represented by consultant lobbyists who make representations to government’. Part One provides that lobbyists must disclose the names of their clients four times a year in a public register; there will be a registrar to enforce compliance, and sanctions for non-compliance. This should make ministers more cautious about promoting policies that favour special interests, and should make special interest groups more cautious in their dealings with ministers. Those who want to engage in this type of lobbying, and can afford it, can properly be expected to bear the costs of regulation.’

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London Review of Books, 19th December 2013

Source: www.lrb.co.uk

Prince Charles faces fresh challenge to secret communications with ministers – The Guardian

‘Prince Charles is to face a fresh challenge to his secret communication channel to government ministers when a court is asked to reveal whether he lobbied for an exemption to property laws affecting his £800m estate.’

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The Guardian, 3rd December 2013

Source: www.guardian.co.uk

Government to amend lobbying regulation plans – BBC News

Posted September 27th, 2013 in bills, charities, elections, freedom of expression, lobbying, news by tracey

“The government has proposed a series of amendments to its lobbying bill, after charities and voluntary groups raised concerns they could be gagged.”

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BBC News, 26th September 2013

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Charities force anti-lobbying laws rethink – BBC News

Posted September 9th, 2013 in bills, charities, lobbying, news by tracey

“Ministers have amended their plans for new anti-lobbying laws after charities warned the bill could affect their ability to campaign.”

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BBC News, 6th September 2013

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Jacob Rowbottom: Third Party Spending Controls and the Lobbying Bill – UK Constitutional Law Group

Posted September 5th, 2013 in bills, elections, lobbying, news, third parties by sally

“The Transparency of Lobbying, Non-Party Campaigning and Trade Union Administration Bill is proving to be controversial for various reasons – not least for proposing amendments to controls on third party spending during election campaigns (under the current law independent organisations have to register with the Electoral Commission if they spend over a certain amount on election material, and such spending is subject to an overall cap). Many of the criticisms have focused on the potential for the proposed law to apply to the political speech of charities, think tanks, blogs and campaign groups.”

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UK Constitutional Law Group, 4th September 2013

Source: www.ukconstitutionallaw.org