• Research Briefing

    Possible implications of House of Lords reform LLN 2010/014

    Possible Implications of House of Lords Reform: The purpose of this House of Lords Library Note is to consider the possible consequences of House of Lords reform. An implicit assumption in the Note is that future proposals to reform the Lords will be based on a fully or mainly elected Second Chamber. The major focus of the Note concerns the impact of such reform upon the House itself, its relationship with the House of Commons and Government, but also with the electorate and society more generally.

  • Research Briefing

    Wash-Up: Bills Receiving Royal Assent, 1987–2005. LLN 2010/011

    Wash-Up: Bills Receiving Royal Assent, 1987–2005 The purpose of this Note is to examine the passage of Bills that have received Royal Assent during the wash-up periods that preceded the last five general elections, by illustrating what stage each Bill had reached by the start of the wash-up and how it progressed through its remaining stages. It also contains a table showing Public Bills currently before parliament and the stage in the legislative process that each has reached. The inclusion of this information is not intended to imply any judgement about when the date of the 2010 general election will be announced, merely to summarise the situation at the time of writing.

  • Research Briefing

    Crime and Security Bill (HL Bill 45 of 2009–10). LLN 2010/010

    Crime and Security Bill (HL Bill 45 of 2009–10) The Crime and Security Bill is wide-ranging. It contains provisions to reduce the reporting requirements on the police when they stop and search individuals; to set out a statutory framework for the retention and destruction of biometric material, including DNA data; to provide the police with the power to issue “go” notices to alleged perpetrators of domestic violence; to extend injunctions for gang-related violence to 14-17 year-olds; to require courts to make parenting orders when a young person breaches an ASBO; to introduce a licensing scheme for wheel-clamping businesses; to create a new criminal offence of possessing a mobile phone in prison; to create a new offence of failing to take reasonable precautions to prevent a person under 18 from having unauthorised access to an air weapon; to compensate the victims of overseas terrorism; to enable licensing authorities to restrict the sale of alcohol between 3am and 6am; and to give the police new powers to search a person subject to a control order. The Bill has completed its passage through the House of Commons and is due for a second reading debate in the House of Lords on 29th March 2010. This House of Lords Library Note focuses on the debates on the retention and destruction of DNA data on the National DNA Database. It also gives brief details of the other parts of the Bill that were discussed at report stage in the Commons.

  • Research Briefing

    Debate on 11th March: The national minimum wage and poverty. LLN 2010/008

    Debate on 11th March: The national minimum wage and poverty. This Library Note aims to provide background reading for the debate to be held on 11th March: “The impact of the National Minimum Wage on household and individual poverty” This Note examines the history and development of the National Minimum Wage since its introduction in 1999, and its effect on earnings, the economy, and groups within society. The Note then examines levels and trends in poverty since the election of the Labour Government and the subsequent introduction of the National Minimum Wage.

  • Research Briefing

    Ceremonial in the House of Lords. LLN 2010/007

    Ceremonial in the House of Lords. This Library Note focuses on the principal ceremonies that take place in the House of Lords, including the State Opening, presenting the Speaker of the House of Commons, Royal Assent, prorogation and dissolution, and the Introduction of peers. It also describes the role of Royal Commissions, the roles of the Earl Marshal and the Lord Great Chamberlain, other notable ceremonies (the Lord Speaker’s Procession and presentation of an Address to the Sovereign) and finally looks at proposals for reform.

  • Research Briefing

    Debate on 25th February: Higher and Further Education Funding. LLN 2010/006

    Debate on 25th February: Higher and Further Education Funding. This Library Note aims to provide background reading for the debate to be held on Thursday 25th February: “To call attention to the consequences of the cuts to higher and further education funding that have been announced” This Note provides a snapshot of the UK higher and further education sector as it stands today, together with details of recent policy developments in these areas. It also gives details of the funding announcements made by the Government and the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) and the reaction to those announcements by the universities and colleges. Finally, the Note outlines some of the recent contributions to the debate on how higher education in particular should be funded.

  • Research Briefing

    Fiscal Responsibility Bill (HL Bill 24 of 2009–2010). LLN 2010/005

    Fiscal Responsibility Bill (HL Bill 24 of 2009–2010). The Fiscal Responsibility Bill imposes a statutory duty on the Treasury to meet specific targets for the reduction of government borrowing and debt. The Bill gives Parliament a greater role in fiscal policy. It has completed its passage through the House of Commons and is due for its second reading debate in the House of Lords on 10th February 2010. This House of Lords Library Note summarises the second reading debate and the other stages of the Bill’s passage through the House of Commons.

  • Research Briefing

    Debate on 4th February: the national security strategy. LLN 2010/004

    Debate on 4th February: the national security strategy. This Library Note aims to provide background reading for the debate to be held on Thursday 4th February: “To call attention to the United Kingdom’s National Security Strategy” This Note outlines the UK’s National Security Strategy, which was first published in March 2008 and updated in June 2009. It also gives details of the implementation of various new bodies and processes that have been established within the framework of the National Security Strategy, and considers the Strategy’simplications for the intelligence services and the military. Finally it outlines alternative national security strategies recently proposed by the Institute for Public Policy Research and the Conservative Party.

  • Research Briefing

    Debate on 28th January: the case For a fairer and more progressive tax system. LLN 2010/003

    Debate on 28th January: the case For a fairer and more progressive tax system This Library Note aims to provide background reading for the debate to be held on Thursday 28th January: “To call attention to the case for a fairer and more progressive tax system” This Note examines the differing perspectives recently put forward by interest groups and policy think-tanks on whether reforms should be introduced aimed at providing for a fairer and more progressive system of taxation in the UK.

  • Research Briefing

    Debate on 21st January: prospects for nuclear disarmament and strengthening non-proliferation. LLN 2010/002

    Debate on 21st January: Prospects for Nuclear Disarmament and Strengthening Non-Proliferation. This Library Note aims to provide background reading for the Debate to be held on Thursday 21st January: “To call attention to the prospects for multi-lateral nuclear disarmament and for strengthening nuclear non-proliferation” The Non-Proliferation Treaty Review Conference will take place in May 2010. This Note summarises the main issues addressed in the Foreign Office information paper Lifting the Nuclear Shadow: Creating the Conditions for Abolishing Nuclear Weapons and the Government’s agenda for the Review Conference, as laid out in the Cabinet Office paper The Road to 2010: Addressing the Nuclear Question in the Twenty First Century. The Note also chronicles the main developments in the international community since the publication of these papers and summarises some of the contributions to the nuclear debate from a variety of sources, including the views of the UN Secretary General and the former Director of the International Atomic Energy Agency.

  • Research Briefing

    Debate on 14th January: The Copenhagen Conference on Climate Change. LLN 2010/001

    Debate on 14th January: The Copenhagen Conference on Climate Change. This Library Note aims to provide background reading for the debate to be held on Thursday 14th January: “To call attention to the outcome of the Copenhagen Conference on Climate Change” The UN Conference on Climate Change took place in Copenhagen from 7th–19th December 2009. This Note explains the significance of the Conference in the context of previous international agreements on climate change, sets out the major disagreements that marred the negotiating process in Copenhagen and summarises the key elements contained in the final Copenhagen Accord. It considers analysis of the Accord’s achievements and shortcomings, and summarises the reactions of key nations and interest groups.

  • Research Briefing

    Cluster Munitions (Prohibitions) Bill. LLN 2009/011

    Cluster Munitions (Prohibitions) Bill. House of Lords Library Note 2009/011. The Cluster Munitions (Prohibitions) Bill was introduced in the House of Lords on 19th November 2009, and is due to receive its second reading on 8th December. This Library Note provides background information on the use of cluster munitions; UK and international policy on their use; and the measures contained in the Bill.

  • Research Briefing

    House of Lords: expense allowances and costs. LLN 2009/009

    House of Lords: expense allowances and costs. House of Lords Library Note 2009/009. This House of Lords Library Note looks at the expense allowances that Peers have been able to claim since 1946. In particular, a chronology of key debates and motions is provided, as is a summary table of expense allowances. The second part of this Note provides a series of figures of the cost of the House of Lords since the Life Peerages Act 1958.