Birmingham’s nine Labour MPs have today written to the Chief Executive of the Legal Aid Agency calling on him to reverse the Agency’s decision to refuse Legal Aid to the families of 10 of the victims of the Birmingham Pub Bombings at the Court of Appeal.
The families are contesting an appeal by the Coroner, Sir Peter Thornton QC, against a High Court ruling that he should reconsider his decision to prohibit the identification of suspects during the reopened inquest into the Pub Bombings.
Lawyers presenting the Coroner’s case will be publicly funded but, following the Legal Aid Agency’s decision, the families will be denied equivalent funding to present their case.
Welcome to my latest Parliamentary newsletter.
Space prevents the newsletter covering all of what I have been doing over the past month. However, hopefully it provides a flavour of some of the local issues I have taken up as well as my actions in Parliament. You’ll find updates on North Worcestershire Golf Club, local government funding and other issues. As ever, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me on these or any other issues.
Residents living close to North Worcestershire Golf Course will know that in August 2017 a renewed application by Bloor Homes to build 950 homes on the site of the old golf course was rejected by Birmingham City Council.
Bloor Homes have now lodged an appeal with the government, in an attempt to overturn this decision
If you submitted comments to Birmingham City Council when the planning application was in front of them, those comments will be forwarded to the Planning Inspector. However, you can also submit comments direct to the Planning Inspectorate – regardless of whether you have already sent in comments to the City Council and I would urge you to do so. You can do that by entering the application reference number 3192918 on the Planning Inspectorate website here – https://acp.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/.
Government funding to Birmingham City Council has been cut by almost £650 million since 2010. This is the biggest cut in local government history and is more than 75 per cent of the City Council’s current net budget.
To make matters worse, due to unfairness in the way local government funding has been allocated by the Conservative Government, Birmingham is £100 million a year worse off than if cuts were made fairly.
Yesterday I asked the Government that all local authorities are treated equally in terms of the level of cuts made annually. That would mean that Birmingham City Council receives the extra £100 million extra funding it deserves.