General News

DTI: The Science and Innovation Minister, Malcolm Wicks has announced names of the Chair and members for new Science and Technology Facilities Council, which brings together the work of the:

It will be responsible for particle physics, astronomy, space science, nuclear physics, synchrotron radiation, neutron sources and high power lasers and will manage the Rutherford Appleton and Daresbury laboratories.

The STFC will have a budget of about £530 million per annum, employ more than 2,000 staff and will be under the sponsorship of the Department of Trade and Industry, which will provide most of its funding
Press release ~ CCLRC/PPARC merger home page ~ Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (PPARC) ~ Council of the Central Laboratory of the Research Councils (CCLRC) ~ Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)


Defra: From 1 April 2007 the State Veterinary Service (SVS), an executive agency of the Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), will be known as Animal Health.

The move brings together, under a single agency, all the expertise previously offered by SVS, the Dairy Hygiene and Egg Marketing Inspectorates and the Wildlife Licensing and Registration Service. The formation of this new single body is in line with recommendations made by the Hampton Review.
Press release ~ Veterinary Service (SVS) ~ Dairy Hygiene Inspectorate ~ Egg Marketing Inspectorate ~ Wildlife Licensing and Registration Service ~ Defra – Animal health and welfare ~ NOAH (National Office of Animal Health) ~ Hampton Review

DWP: The government claims that it is committed to maintaining momentum on pensions reform, as it takes forward proposals in a White Paper for a system of personal accounts.

It said the National Pensions Debate found that there is broad agreement on proposals such as restoring the earnings link and raising the State Pension Age. The raising of the retirement age to 68 by 2046 will broadly maintain the proportion of adult life spent over State Pension age at around 30% - as it is today.
Press release ~ The White Paper, Personal accounts: a new way to save ~ Information on pensions reform ~ National Pensions Debate ~ White Paper on Pension Reform - Security in Retirement: towards a new pensions system ~ Public attitudes to personal accounts: Report of a qualitative study ~ Tax help for older people on low incomes with tax problems ~ Pensions Commission ~ Which? - NPSS model

Defra: A new policy for managing solid low level radioactive waste has been published by the UK Government and the devolved administrations. The policy, which follows a public consultation in 2006, claims to put proving public safety at the forefront of dealing with low level radioactive waste (LLW) and sets out a more flexible & pragmatic approach to managing LLW.

It also stresses the need to minimise the amount of waste created and recognises the need to involve the public in developing & authorising LLW management plans.
Press release ~ Policy for the Long Term Management of Solid Low Level Radioactive Waste in the United Kingdom ~ Defra – Radioactive waste ~ Nuclear Decommissioning Authority ~ Committee on Radioactive Waste Management (CoRWM) ~ Closed consultation on UK policy for long term management of solid low level radioactive waste
~ Inventory of UK radioactive wastes ~ Copeland BC - Response to the consultation on the EA's regulatory review of the disposal of radioactive waste (low level waste) at the national low level waste repository (LLWR) at Drigg in Cumbria ~ Radioactive Waste Management Advisory Committee (RWMAC) ~ DTI nuclear website ~ Scottish Executive ~ British Energy ~ BBC news item on Sweden’s problems ~ FoE website ~ Greenpeace website~ Nirex ~ UKAEA ~ HSE Nuclear web pages ~ HSE Nuclear Safety Advisory Committee (NuSAC) ~ Office for Civil Nuclear Security~ BNFL

MCA: The MCA monthly video podcast newsletter is a series of video files with voice over commentary available for download over the internet, containing news, safety information maritime incidents and events happening in the MCA.

You can subscribe to our podcast page and listen to (or watch) the downloaded files on your computer, or move them to a portable device (like an mp3 player or mobile phone) to listen to while you're out and about
Press release ~ Monthly newsletter video podcast

FDA: The FDA, the union representing senior public servants, has joined MPs’ calls for a Civil Service Act and expressed its ‘deep concern’ over revelations that Home Office MP Gerry Sutcliff had asked his department for lists of officials who supported or opposed his Offender Management policy.

FDA head of business development Paul Whiteman said: “The FDA welcomes the publication of the Public Administration Select Committee’s (PASC) report Politics and Administration: Ministers and Civil Servants, and we look forward to considering its detail. ….. We strongly echo the PASC’s call for a Civil Service Act to enshrine the values of independence and impartiality of the civil service in legislation.”
Press release ~ FDA (formerly First Division Association) ~ Politics and Administration: Ministers and Civil Servants ~ Written response by the Civil Service Commissioners ~ Issues and Questions paper ~ Times online article

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