Random Musing

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Mr Raccoon

More coalition backpeddling on supposed cuts.

Following quickly on from Booktrusts reprieve from the chop (another £13 million to find to plug that little hole), we now have more backpeddling from the Quango execution list :

Ministers have withdrawn 18 bodies from the bill they say will lead to a “bonfire of the quangos”.

Bodies that select judges, draw up sentencing guidelines and investigate miscarriages of justice in England and Wales are among those that have been taken off a list of those that could be abolished, scrapped or merged.

The Parole Board, the Criminal Cases Review Commission and the Surveillance Commissioners have also been withdrawn.

This followed criticism by judges.

Ministers announced plans in October to axe 192 public bodies and merge a further 118.

But the government has now amended the Public Bodies Bill, which is currently being considered by the House of Lords, after peers expressed fears that the proposed cull could put the independence of the judiciary at risk.

Reading that section, there does seem to be some sense in the reprieve as it has been a long time since our Parliament respected the judiciary but when you get to the actual list of those saved from the chop, some rather strange ones stand out (emphasis mine):

  • Agricultural Land Tribunals
  • Civil Procedure Rule Committee
  • Surveillance Commissioners
  • Competition Appeal Tribunal
  • Criminal Cases Review Commission
  • Criminal Procedure Rule Committee
  • Family Procedure Rule Committee
  • Horserace Betting Levy Appeal Tribunal for England and Wales
  • Insolvency Practitioners Tribunal
  • Investigatory Powers Tribunal
  • Judicial Appointments and Conduct Ombudsman
  • Judicial Appointments Commission
  • Parole Board
  • Plant Varieties and Seeds Tribunal
  • Sea Fish Licence Tribunal
  • Sentencing Council for England and Wales
  • Tribunal Procedure Committee
  • Valuation Tribunal for England

Would those happen to have Lords sitting on them by any chance who don’t want to lose their income?

The Plant Varieties and Seeds Tribunal sounds terribly important to judicial independence to me (yes, sarcasm intended) and is possibly as vital to the continuation of civil society in UK as The Potato Council for example.

There is not even a lot of information to go on either with the best I can find being the following little snippet :

Hears appeals against decisions of the Controller of Plant Variety Rights on Plant Breeders Rights matters; against decisions of the Agriculture Ministers on National List and Seeds matters; and against the decisions of the Forestry Commissioners on matters concerning forest reproduction materials.

And, if that is not mysterious enough then the following bit (same source) makes me wonder why the hell it has even got a reprieve from the chop :

Cases received:
Total disposals in the year:
disputes resolved:
otherwise disposed of:
Pending at the end of the year:
Last sat 1984.
system administration £1,000 (approximately)

So, something that hasn’t heard any cases in the last 27 years and costs £1000 per year to maintain has been reprieved.

How the fuck are this lot going to make a dent in the thick end of £1 trillion in debt when they cannot even save £1000 on something that is effectively fossilised?

Ah yes, thats it – tax us all to buggery and back!

Why do I get the feeling that they have no idea what they are doing?

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