On 3rd July 2020 the Rt Revd Alan Smith, Bishop of St Albans, received a written answer to a question from Baroness Barran on gambling.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: HL6028 To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the statement by Lord Ashton of Hyde on 2 July 2019 (HL Deb, cols 1344–6), and in the light of the pledge made by the Betting and Gambling Council’s five largest members this week, whether the announcement made in the July 2019 statement is now null and void; and if not, where the money has been distributed; what involvement Her Majesty’s Government had in the announcement by the Betting and Gambling Council; and why is the money no longer being distributed by the committee launched by Lord Chadlington.
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On 29th June Baroness Pinnock asked Her Majesty’s Government “what is their response to reports that five of the largest councils in the United Kingdom may have to issue a notice under section 114 of the Local Government Finance Act 1988, as a result of a loss of income due to the COVID-19 pandemic.” The Rt Revd Alan Smith, Bishop of St Albans, asked a follow up question focusing on local council income in Luton.
The Lord Bishop of St Albans: My Lords, it is not only these five councils who are facing severe challenges. Luton Borough Council in my own diocese, which is one of the most innovative and forward-looking councils in the country, owns Luton Airport. Due to the lockdown, the collapse of this income stream is resulting in a massive hole in the council’s revenue. What conversations have Her Majesty’s Government had with Luton Borough Council? What are the Government intending to do to support Luton?
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On 16th May 2018 the Bishop of Durham, Rt Revd Paul Butler received a written answer to a question on the costs of daycare for children:
The Lord Bishop of Durham: To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the costs and benefits of extending the 30 hours free childcare for three and four year olds to families where parents are in training to prepare for work.
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On the 27th October the Bishop of Salisbury the Rt Revd Nicholas Holtam spoke in the second reading debate of Lord Tyler’s Private Members Bill, ‘Democratic Political Activity (Funding and Expenditure) Bill’. The Bishop acknowledged that the House had achieved a consensus that we have a problem with funding of political parties and he encouraged all sides of the debate to lay aside all private interests, prejudices and partial affections, to sit down together and work out what best to do.
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