Archive | November, 2012

Empty... The previous meeting was poorly advertised

Ambulance Service Revive Meeting

The East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) will be re-running a public meeting in Chesterfield – following pressure from MP Toby Perkins.

Not a single member of the public attended the poorly advertised original session last month, where ambulance bosses put forward their plans which include replacing the region’s 66 ambulance stations and with 13 of ‘super hubs’ and 118 ‘community ambulance posts’.

Empty... The previous meeting was poorly advertised

Empty... The previous meeting was poorly advertised

EMAS have stated that the new model will lead to a more efficient and effective service but opponents, including some councils, have raised concerns that response times will increase.

The new meeting has been scheduled for Wednesday 21st November in Chesterfield Royal Hospital’s Lecture Theatre, beginning at 6pm.

Chesterfield MP, Toby Perkins, said: “I was horrified when I found out, by chance, from an MP in the Nottinghamshire area on the day of the original meeting in Chesterfield that such serious proposals were being tabled without the public’s knowledge.

“The meeting hadn’t been reported in the local media. I tipped off the only journalist present as soon as I found out about the session, only hours before it was due to take place.

Mr Perkins added: “These proposals have the potential to affect anyone who calls an ambulance in the East Midlands, so I strongly encourage people to come forward, scrutinise the plans and make their views heard”.

Posted in Featured, News, Press ReleaseComments Off on Ambulance Service Revive Meeting

Toby Perkins MP with staff and volunteers at the Ashgate Hospice Donation Centre

MP backs Hospice Venture

MP backs Hospice Venture

Chesterfield’s MP has visited a pioneering new Donation Centre with an emphasis on supporting the bereaved.

Toby Perkins MP with staff and volunteers at the Ashgate Hospice Donation Centre

Toby Perkins MP with staff and volunteers at the Ashgate Hospice Donation Centre

Ashgate Hospice’s new Donation Centre on the Storforth Lane Trading Estate in Hasland, Chesterfield, is now taking contributions of good quality clothes, furniture and household items to help find the £2.8 million a year needed to keep the hospice open.

Often after the death of a friend or relative, parting with their belongings can be a traumatic experience. The Hospice has recognised the distress dealing with bereavement can bring and has set up the Donation Centre to be a welcoming space and a “safe pair of hands” to find new homes for a loved one’s cherished possessions.

Ashgate Hospice’s Retail and Trading Manager Graham Richardson said: “Seeing the fantastic work of the hospice when members of my family needed their care inspired me to get involved.

“The Hospice’s support really helped to ease the pressure in tough times.”

Chesterfield MP Toby Perkins said: “Anyone who’s seen the Hospice in action can’t fail to be amazed by the quality of life the charity can bring to extremely ill people.

“But with only 40% of the Hospice’s running costs covered by the government, it’s a mammoth task keeping the facility open.”

Mr Perkins added: “I encourage anyone who has any good quality unwanted items to consider taking them to the Donation Centre.”

Posted in Featured, News, Press ReleaseComments Off on MP backs Hospice Venture

Morning Advertiser

Shadow Pubs Minister welcomes partial government u-turn on pubco regulation – but warns that independent pubs groups must not be ignored

Less than a month ago the attitude of Jo Swinson, the new BIS Minister, towards the pubs agenda was extremely dismissive.  She refused a meeting request from the Publican’s Morning Advertiser on the grounds that all the government’s commitments made “have now been achieved”, prompting an angry reaction from the Chair of the BIS Select Committee and the All Party Save The Pub Group (http://tinyurl.com/9hw64gy).

She even failed to clarify for MPs and the industry if she was actually responsible for pubs by ignoring a letter from Toby Perkins MP, the Shadow Pubs Minister, which pointed out that pubs policy has not been allocated to any minister on the list of their responsibilities on the BIS website.

Labour has consistently supported the calls of the BIS Select Committee for an independent review of how the relationship between pubcos and licencees can be put on a more formal, statutory footing.  A broad coalition of groups in the pub trade have all supported this call, including:

  • CAMRA
  • the Federation of Small Businesses
  • the BIS Select Committee – which has a majority of coalition members
  • the Liberal Democrat Member for Leeds North West
  • the Conservative Member for Northampton South
  • the All Party Parliamentary Save the Pub Group
  • UNITE the Union
  • the Independent Pub Confederation
  • Fair Pint
  • the GMB Union
  • the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers
  • the Guild of Master Victuallers
  • the Society of Independent Brewers
  • the Forum of Private Business

The government has so far ignored this group of interests and also the will of Parliament, which voted unanimously in favour of this proposal on 12 January.  But at Business, Innovation and Skills questions yesterday morning (8 November) when pressed by four separate Labour MPs on this issue, including Mr Perkins, Swinson announced a partial u-turn.

The minister clearly now feels that all of the government’s commitments have not been met as she announced that: “The Secretary of State has written to the industry asking for evidence on how the self-regulatory approach announced last November is working and we will make our decision after considering the response from the industry.”

Toby cautiously welcomed the partial u-turn, but warned that there would still be much confusion for those in the pub trade.  He said:

‘The entire industry knows that the current self-regulatory system is not working – with the respected Lib Dem chair of the All Party Save the Pub Group announcing just last month that “self regulation has failed”.  Until this morning it seemed as though this out-of-touch government was determined to ignore these voices, so I welcome the fact that they will now at least talk to some in the industry about the self regulation policy.  However, the best thing they could do would be to would be to stop thinking they know better than the hugely diverse coalition of groups who are calling for an independent review on statutory regulation, and do just that.’

Perkins also expressed fears that the government’s new discussions on pubco regulation might ignore several important groups.  He added:

‘The Secretary of State has not told us exactly who he will be writing to, but we know from past experience that this Tory-led government prefers to listen to large pub companies rather that licensees and independent groups when making its policy.  I have tabled a parliamentary question today asking the government to ensure they don’t ignore these important groups when carrying out these discussions.  If it is revealed that they are only consulting with large pub companies this will be yet another kick in the teeth to local pubs and their millions of patrons.’

Toby’s parliamentary question is as follows:

To ask the Secretary of State for Business Innovation and Skills, further to the announcement in the House on 8 November 2012 by the Member for East Dunbartonshire, that he will be contacting the pubs industry asking for evidence on the success or otherwise of his self-regulatory approach, if the following organisations have been contacted as part of this process:

  • CAMRA
  • Fair Pint
  • UNITE the Union
  • the Independent Pub Confederation
  • Fair Pint
  • the GMB Union
  • the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers
  • the Guild of Master Victuallers
  • the Society of Independent Brewers
  • the Forum of Private Business
  • The All Party Save The Pub Group

 

Posted in Featured, News, Press ReleaseComments Off on Shadow Pubs Minister welcomes partial government u-turn on pubco regulation – but warns that independent pubs groups must not be ignored

EXPENSES UPDATE JUNE- AUGUST 2012

The expenses claimed over the period 1st June 2012 to 31st August 2012 were as follows:

Phone Bills

I claim for only 75% of the cost of my mobile phone. These came to:

 £47.31 in June,

 £56.33 in July

£40.88 in August.

The Constituency office telephone bill for February – July 2012 was £314.27

Travel costs

Train/ underground travel from Chesterfield to London:

2/6- 22/6 £890.80 plus staff travel of £23.40

26/6/- 19/7 £1254.70

1/8- 11/9 £415.80

Parking

June Parking on constituency engagements was £30.80

My mileage costs were

June £58.59

July £38.02

August £166.77

There was also a congestion charge bill for £10.

Costs associated with London flat

Electricity £48.78

TV licence £145.50 for the year.

Rent

My monthly rent on the one bedroom London flat is £1490

Stationery, Toners and Ancillaries

There was a  toner bill for £258 in July.

And a stationery bill for £16.34 in June, and bills totalling £252.68 in July and £19.98 in August.

Constituency Office costs:

The quarterly rent for the constituency office is £1495 per quarter.

The broadband line cost :

June £24.22

July £24.46

August £24.76

The constituency office electric bill for May- Aug 2012 is £282.09

The service charge for July- Sept 2012 is £229.04

Additional expenditure

There were additional costs associated with the renting of the constituency office which were unknown at the time of signing the original agreement and will be costed against 2011-12, but were only finally agreed and put in to IPSA recently. From May 2012, they will be billed on a quarterly basis as the bills come in and will be recorded as Electricity, Gas or Service charges, however for 2011-12 they have been itemised and bills provided to IPSA, and the constituency office pays a proportion of the total utilities used.

Utilities usage 2011-12 £1874.66

Posted in ExpensesComments Off on EXPENSES UPDATE JUNE- AUGUST 2012

Welcome

I am Toby Perkins, Labour's Member of Parliament for Chesterfield. If you would like to get in touch with me, my office is open and can be reached by phone on 01246 386 286. I also hold regular surgeries so that constituents can meet me and I can take up their concerns. If you would like to make an appointment then please do contact my office. Thank you for visiting.

Contact Toby

Tel: 01246 386286
Email: toby.perkins.mp@parliament.uk
Post: 113 Saltergate, Chesterfield, S40 1NF

Surgeries

I hold regular surgeries for my constituents.
Please call 01246 386286 or email toby.perkins.mp@parliament.uk to make a booking.

Total Politics Top 30 MP Blog

RSS Appearances