Policy Statements and Initiatives
DWP: A tapas restaurant, tattoo parlour, party entertainer & removals company are among 4,560 businesses which have been launched thanks to a Government scheme to help entrepreneurial jobseekers, Employment Minister Chris Grayling has revealed.
The businesses have started up thanks to the New Enterprise Allowance, which partners jobseekers with a mentor to draw up a business plan, then gives them financial support to help them through the early months and the number is growing all the time. Hundreds of new businesses are now starting up every week under the scheme.
ScotGov: The next steps in a government drive to cut red tape for farmers were announced by Rural Affairs Secretary Richard Lochhead last week. Speaking at Scotsheep 2012 in Ayrshire, Mr Lochhead said that Brian Pack had now completed the initial scoping phase of his review and his report – Doing Better: The Scoping Report for the Initiative to Reduce Red Tape in Agriculture – has been published.
CLG: Clearing out the louts, setting up savvy services and rallying round the community are top of a 'shopping list for success' that can transform run down neighbourhood shops into parades to be proud of, announced Communities Secretary Eric Pickles last week.
Mr Pickles has published a new guide that gives hands on practical advice & insights on how to restore local shops into vibrant business areas that are full of local character and sit at the heart of neighbourhood communities. This builds on the high street review by Mary Portas and the announcement of 12 'Portas Pilots'.
ScotGov: Scores of dealers will be subject to licensing regulations under tough new measures to clamp down on metal thieves announced by the Justice Secretary. Kenny MacAskill made the announcement as he joined British Transport Police and the Association of Chief Police Officers Scotland for the launch of their Cut Out Metal Theft campaign.
Metal dealers with a annual turnover of £1m or less will require a licence. This raises the exemption limit from the current level of £100,000, which is not fit for purpose given the increase in value over recent year. Reponses to a consultation into the licensing of metal dealers have also been published.
ScotGov: A massive programme to transform Scotland’s ageing houses into energy efficient homes has been announced. The Scottish Government hopes to work with energy companies to identify around £200m a year to assist homes in areas of fuel poverty save money and become more energy efficient.
WAG: Environment Minster, John Griffiths, has announced grants totalling £348,052 for 31 community led Tidy Towns funded projects to improve local environment quality.