FSA: The European Commission is reviewing the current Framework Directive (Directive 2009/39/EC) on foods intended for particular nutritional uses (also known as ‘PARNUT’ or dietetic foods). The proposal includes changes to claims about gluten. The UK governments have launched consultations to seek views on the proposal to inform forthcoming negotiations within Europe. Consultation closes – 3 October 2011.
WAG: Transport Minister, Carl Sargeant, has launched a blue badge scheme consultation document (closes on 31 October 2011) as part of the ongoing Welsh Government commitment to reforming the scheme. It includes proposals for:
* Introducing an improved IT system to administer the Blue Badge scheme
* A newly designed secure blue badge
* Changing the Blue Badge fee
* Giving local authorities additional powers to reduce fraud and tackle misuse
NICE: NICE is gathering the opinions of patients & the public to help develop the ways it presents its guidance. They have launched a short online questionnaire, consisting of questions that will help gauge the awareness of our clinical guidelines and experience of using them. The questionnaire is a mixture of multiple choice questions and opportunities to provide more detailed replies. The survey forms part of a larger study called DECIDE, which is a 5-year collaborative project funded by the European Commission's Seventh Framework Programme.
NE: Natural England has launched a public consultation (closes on 30 September 2011) to ‘seek views on how to help people to comply with laws protecting wildlife and the natural environment, and on how these laws should be enforced if regulations are broken’.
FSA: The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has published a Consultation Paper (CP) and Discussion Paper (DP) on its proposals for Recovery and Resolution Plans (RRP), required of financial institutions. The publication also covers policy proposals aimed at reducing the impact of firms' failure in relation to their investment business client money and custody assets holdings. Consultation closes on 9 November 2011.
The CP covers the requirement for banks and large investment firms in the UK to prepare and maintain Recovery and Resolution Plans and the DP explores matters relevant to the resolution of financial services firms. The FSA will hold events for firms & advisers to talk through the proposals in early September. Further details can be found on the FSA website.
BIS: The Government has launched a consultation setting out proposals that will ‘promote high quality teaching & learning for adults, further free colleges to respond more effectively to the needs of their local communities and strengthen the skills system by securing a fairer balance of investment between learners, employers and taxpayers’.
The plans outlined in New Challenges, New Chances represent the next phase of the Government’s plans to implement radical reform of adult learning & skills provision in England. The consultation will close on Friday 21 October 2011.
Press release & links ~ New Challenges, New Chances: Next Steps in Implementing the Further Education Reform Programme
FSA: The Food Standards Agency is seeking information from relevant groups on the sale & consumption of whole insects and other animals, such as worms, in the UK, including details of species that are currently on sale. This follows a request by the EU Commission for all EU member states to identify insects introduced to the EU market after 15 May 1997, which may, in future, require a novel food safety assessment.
Any relevant information should be emailed to the Agency's Novel Foods Unit by Friday 2 September 2011. Interested parties unable to meet this deadline should email the Novel Foods Unit as soon as possible.
DCMS: The Gambling Commission will be able to share information with the International Olympic Committee (IOC) on suspicious betting related activity under proposals recently announced. Currently, the Gambling Commission can only share limited information with sports governing bodies, unless the body is specifically listed in the Gambling Act 2005.
The GC is planning to amend this in order to add the IOC and they are also consulting (closes 9 November 2011) on whether any additional sports bodies should also be included.
Socitm: Socitm is seeking members’ comments & questions on the Government’s Open Public Services white paper (published last month), which sets out how the Government intends to ‘make improvement happen by putting choice & control in the hands of individuals & neighbourhoods, encouraging public services to become more responsive to peoples' needs’. Socitm will be responding to the consultation in September and invites members to offer their questions comments now, via the Socitm blog.
CLG: The CLG has unveiled details of plans to ensure that landlords can take action against tenants who wreck communities beyond the immediate neighbourhood of their home. A consultation (closes on 17 November 2011) has now been launched on allowing landlords to seek to evict tenants convicted of the sort of criminality seen in the recent rioting - wherever that criminality occurs – See ‘Policy Statements & Initiatives’ section for more information.