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HM Treasury press release Since the launch of the two parts of Help to Buy, the Equity Loan and mortgage guarantee schemes. * 82% of scheme completions have been made by first-time buyers * the average house price was £187... Continue to article
Thanks to a couple of technical problems, some subscribers haven't received this morning's Waugh Room Memo. Here it is in full: Paul Waugh is away. Today’s memo is written by Josh May. A huge day looms as David Cameron fina... Continue to article
Communities secretary backs campaign against 'wholly unacceptable' proposal to demolish part of Victorian market halls The communities secretary, Eric Pickles, has sided with campaigners battling to s... Continue to article
Communities secretary Eric Pickles speaks at the Local Government Association conference in Bournemouth (16.45) Defence secretary Philip Hammond speaks at the RUSI air power conference in London (13.35) Education secretary Michael Gov... Continue to article
Eric Pickles accused Labour of fiddling the figures when questioned about rising waiting times in the NHS. “We’ve got more nurses, we’ve got more doctors, we’ve got less bureaucrats. The only reason why Labour is claiming these waiting l... Continue to article
Eric Pickles has agreed to look into suggestions that local authorities may have been using letters that were deliberately designed to look as if they were from law firms, in order to scare recipients into paying debts. “I do think it’s ... Continue to article
Prime minister David Cameron announces a rail improvements package for Cornwall on a visit to the South West and visits Scotland to discuss the union Labour leader Ed Miliband (10.05), shadow chancellor Ed Balls (09.25), shadow business ... Continue to article
Labour leader Ed Miliband speaks in Leeds at the launch of Lord Adonis’ report on economic growth, innovation and job creation Communities secretary Eric Pickles speaks at the opening day of the Recovery Festival in London (10.00) Def... Continue to article
Victory for drivers and shoppers!” That’s how Eric Pickles’s eccentric — but, he presumably hopes, vote-winning — new scheme to ban the use of CCTV cars to catch parking offenders is being billed. It’... Continue to article
Prime minister David Cameron attends a World War One commemoration in Belgium (17.30) Health secretary Jeremy Hunt (14.00) and shadow health secretary Andy Burnham (09.05) speak at Commissioning 2014 in London Communities secretary Er... Continue to article
Councils are to receive a £100m emergency fund to try to avert a crisis when new rules governing local authority funding are introduced next year. Some authorities have said changes to the way the Government distributes council tax receipts and local government grants means the working poor will be forced to pay council tax as money for exemptions dries up.
Around £2.3bn worth of council tax is currently going unpaid, data released by local authorities has shown. In Liverpool almost £107m is owed in council tax, while Birmingham has arrears worth more than £96m, and Manchester nearly £49m. Several London Boroughs are also owed upwards of £30m.
Eric Pickles has said David Cameron is doing a "fine job" as Prime Minister and is the "most successful leader" the Conservative Party has had since Margaret Thatcher.
However, he admitted the Coalition had gone through a "difficult time" in the last few days with the controversy over advice to motorists and the taxation of hot food such as pasties.
In a wide-ranging interview with the Daily Telegraph, the Communities Secretary also defended the controversial 'granny tax' on pensioners, insisting that most "won't be affected" and that "pensioners are in a much stronger position now than they have ever been".
Eric Pickles has urged residents to sue their local council if they block extensions in people's gardens. Local authorities have in some cases been resistant to the Coalition's plans to encourage house extensions as part of their construction stimulus package. Mr Pickles has intervened, saying he is "surprised" at this resistance, and that residents will be able to seek damages if their council does so.
Eric Pickles says details of high wages at local authorities shows there is still room to crack down on "dodgy pay deals and boomerang bosses" at councils. The Communities Secretary was responding to research from the Taxpayers' Alliance which found that over 3,000 council staff were earning over £100,000 a year. Labour's Hilary Benn said the Conservative Party needed to "get their house in order" as the research showed nine out of ten of "top town hall earners" were employed by Tory councils.
Immigrants who are not taught to speak English "like a native" face life as members of an unemployable "sub-class", Eric Pickles has said.
In an exclusive interview with PoliticsHome's sister publication The House magazine, the Communities Secretary said the Government wanted people to speak adequate English, adding that there would be a £10m grant to help teach immigrants.
Labour have criticised Mr Pickles' language, with Hilary Benn saying he should be "thinking of practical ways to ensure that anyone settling in this country is able to speak English rather than talking about sub-classes".
02/07/2014 on World at One, BBC Radio 4
25/05/2014 on Sunday Politics, BBC One
Summaries and transcripts from TV and radio
20/09/2014 on Good Morning Scotland, BBC Radio Scotland
20/09/2014 on Today, BBC Radio 4
19/09/2014 on Sky News
4 hours ago