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From: Greg Hands M.P. news@greghands.

Subject: News Bulletin from Greg Hands M.P. #427
Date: 1 March 2015 19:13

Issue 427 -Sunday 1st March 2015

In this edition:
Greg Hands M.P.s Diary

Since the last edition, Greg:

Website of the Week:

Kensington, Chelsea and
Fulham Conservatives

Attended and addressed a packed Annual General Meeting of

the Kensington, Chelsea and Fulham Conservatives, held
at Kensington Town Hall. The meeting included a keynote
speech from Greg, and the announcement of details of the
selection process for the new Conservative Parliamentary
Candidate for Kensington.
Chaired a meeting of the Joint Committee on Security
(JCOS) in Parliament. Greg is the Chairman of JCOS, which
scrutinises security in Parliament.
Met the leading members of the Thomas's Schools
Foundation, to learn more about their extensive fundraising
and volunteering in the community by school parents. Greg will
be assisting them in their local endeavours.
Welcomed a diverse group of regional parliamentarians from
across Pakistan to the House of Commons, to learn more
about Greg's work as a constituency MP and a Government
Attended the Commons tea party of the Cambridge University
Conservative Association (CUCA). Greg is a former
Chairman of CUCA, in 1988.
Attended the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea's
reception for the diplomatic corps, held at Kensington Town
Recorded a contribution for a publicity film for the
Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) to be
broadcast to new MPs after the Election in May.
Carried out his duties as the Conservative Party and the
Governments Deputy Chief Whip.
Held a regular, weekly, advice surgery for local Chelsea and
Fulham residents, at Fulham Library, on Fulham Road, close to
Parsons Green tube. Gregs surgeries are generally weekly, on
Monday mornings, at either Fulham Library, or Peter Jones,
Sloane Square, Chelsea. To make an appointment, email or telephone 020 7219 5448.

George Osborne and Boris

Johnson set out long-term
economic plan for London
Photo news:
Telephone campaigning for
Greg Hands welcomes
Universal Credit roll out to
Great services and low
council tax continue in K&C,
Kensington Leisure Centre
opens Monday 2 March
Consultation begins on
Supplementary Planning
Document on Basements in
Week in Westminster and
Constituency Look Ahead 27th February
How to contact
Greg Hands MP

Website of the Week:

The website of the Kensington, Chelsea and Fulham

Conservatives. See here for more information on the selection
process for the next Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for
the Kensington constituency, to succeed Sir Malcolm Rifkind.

George Osborne and Boris Johnson set out

long-term economic plan for London

The Chancellor and the Mayor of London this week set out their sixpoint long term economic plan for London, showing what has been
delivered, what is underway, and what more can be done to make the
city prosperous in the long term.

In speeches at the Tate Modern, the Chancellor and the Mayor set out
the detailed plan to:






Secure Londons strong economic future by setting the

ambition to outpace the growth of New York City, adding
6.4bn to the London economy by 2030. This is equivalent to
600 more per person if Londons productivity grows at the
same pace projected for New York.
Create over half a million extra jobs in London by 2020 by
backing businesses, attracting world wide investment and
continuing to raise standards in schools.
Solve Londons acute housing problem, the number one
challenge facing the city, by building over 400,000 new homes
including through a London Land Commission to identify
and support development of brownfield and public sector
Deliver 10 billion of new investment in Londons
transport over the next Parliament including new tube
improvements, better roads, more buses and cycle lanes and
identifying the next big infrastructure investment after
Make London a centre of the worlds creative and
commercial life, with new investment in science, finance,
technology and culture. This will include a new feasibility
study to develop a world class concert hall for London which
will be led by the Barbican Centre.
Give more power to Londoners to control their citys
future, with new powers for the Mayor of London to support
economic growth, boost skills in the capital and have more
control over planning powers.

There are no quick fixes for achieving these important goals, so the
Chancellor and the Mayor of London are also setting out a specific
timetable to deliver the key concepts of this plan over the five years of
the next Parliament, and the following decade.
Chelsea and Fulham MP, Greg Hands, commented: Our long-term
economic plan is turning London around with 615,000 new jobs in the
private sector since the election and thousands of new businesses
springing up across the skyline. Step by step we are securing a better
future for our capital city.
This plan will help create half a million extra jobs in the next five
years and is part of our commitment to bringing security and
prosperity to families across our capital city. I look forward to us rising
to the challenge for London to outpace the growth of New York this is
the equivalent of making people 600 better off by 2030.
However our best chance of meeting the aims of this plan is to elect a
Conservative government at the next General Election. The choice at
the next election between competence and chaos; between our
long-term economic plan and Labours Ed Miliband, who is just not up
to the job. Labour dont have a plan for Britains future. They would put
all the progress we have made at risk with their call for more spending
and more borrowing.
The Chancellor and Mayor also announced a number of new specific
measures to improve transport links. These include:
announcing an extension to the 24-hour tube routes to include
the London Overground in 2017. The Mayor has also
committed to buying 200 additional new Routemaster buses
this year, and 800 per year from 2016,
asking Transport for London to come forward with prioritised
proposals for exciting new infrastructure projects including
Crossrail 2, the Bakerloo Line extension, the Old Oak
Common redevelopment and the next phase of Underground

Photo news:

Telephone campaigning for Hammersmith

Greg Hands with a big team of MPs and activists at Conservative

Campaign Headquarters this week, phoning voters in
Hammersmith and elsewhere for the coming General Election.

Greg Hands welcomes Universal Credit roll

out to Fulham
Local MP, Greg Hands, has welcomed the Governments welfare
system reforms being rolled out to Fulham.
Following the successful roll out of Universal Credit in the north-west
of England and in Hammersmith, the Department for Work and
Pensions (DWP) has now begun the first and second tranches of the
national expansion of Universal Credit to local authorities and
Jobcentre areas. The reformed welfare system went live at Fulham
Jobcentre Plus on 16th February 2015.
The Governments new Universal Credit system will replace the
current complex system of benefits and ensure that it always pays to
work. Universal Credit will roll out to new claims from single people,
who would otherwise have been eligible for Jobseekers Allowance,
including those with existing Housing Benefit and Working Tax Credit
claims. Under the new system, benefit will be withdrawn gradually as
claimants start work or increase their earnings, meaning their total
income goes up.
MP for Chelsea and Fulham, Greg Hands, said: Universal Credit is a
major reform that will transform the welfare state in Britain, making
three million people better off, and bringing 33 billion in economic
benefits to society. At the heart of Universal Credit is a belief that work
should always pay.
Labour left behind a welfare system that failed to reward work and
trapped people in poverty. Hardworking taxpayers lost trust in the
system because it created a 'something for nothing' culture.
Reforming the welfare system is a key part of our long-term economic
plan to secure a better future for Britain.
Rightly for a programme of this scale, the Government's priority
continues to be its safe and secure delivery. The controlled expansion
of Universal Credit started in April 2013 and I am pleased that
significant progress has been made to date. I am encouraged that
Universal Credit began its nationwide roll out, starting in our local area
on 16 February, and that it will be rolled out to all Jobcentres in the
country by Spring 2016. Once fully rolled out, estimates show that
Universal Credit will boost the economy by 7 billion every year.
The new system is already proving to be more successful than the
benefits system operated by the last Labour government. I also think
that it is positive that people claiming Universal Credit are 13 per cent
more likely to find work than people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance,
therefore earning more money and more willing to take a job.
Although the system is new, and still not fully rolled out across the
country, early evidence shows it is more successful than the benefits
system operated for 13 years under the last Government. A new
report, Universal Credit at Work spring 2015, and accompanying
research have been published showing that Universal Credit
claimants over the four month period are 13 per cent more likely to
have been in work than those on Jobseekers Allowance and likely to
be earning more money.
Similar to previous findings, the report also confirms that new
Universal Credit claimants in the expanded sites are more likely than
Jobseekers Allowance claimants to believe the benefit system is
encouraging them to find work; more likely take any job they are able
to do; and more likely spend more time looking for work.
Full information on the new Universal Credit system is available at the
DWP website:

Great services and low

continue in K&C, 2015-16



The Royal Boroughs Cabinet has set its fifth austerity budget.
Over the five year period, the Councils revenue budget will have
shrunk by some 48 million; a reduction primarily driven by falls in
grants from central government.
However, despite those falls, the council tax wont have increased at
all; indeed 2015-16 will be the sixth year of continual freeze. And
residents experience of services wont have changed significantly
Maintaining the range and quality of services, and keeping the council
tax the fifth lowest in the country, has been made possible by a radical
austerity strategy adopted by the Cabinet from 2010 onwards.
The strategy has three components:
Sharing services, notably management, with our neighbouring
boroughs. This will yield savings of 12 million by the end of 2015-16;
Traditional savings and efficiencies which in 2015-16 will amount to
4 million and;
Strong stewardship of our property estate. This is playing an
increasingly important role in our strategy with the result that property
income will rise to 9.5 million in 2015-16 from 3.8 million in 2010-11.
The strategy of sharing, savings and stewardship has again enabled
the Cabinet to protect Council services and actual service reductions
will play no significant part in the 2015-16 budget, which will be
debated by the full Council on 4 March and can be read online at
At the same time, thanks to strong reserves built up over many years,
the Cabinet is also able to move forward with a very ambitious capital
programme to secure the future of Kensington and Chelsea. The
projects include a new leisure centre opening in March 2015, the
rebuilding and expansion of three primary schools, new affordable
homes and new extra care housing for older residents.
However as we start to pay some large bills on those projects the
Councils reserves are forecast to shrink considerably, from 160
million next year to 105 million by 2018.
Despite the good news contained in the Council budget, more years of
austerity lie ahead. In his 2014 autumn statement, the Chancellor
revealed that in order to continue to reduce the national deficit, large
reductions in public spending will be necessary and it is likely that
local government will again play a disproportionate role, mainly to
protect funding for the National Health Service and for schools.
The Council has anticipated this and has reduced spending not just in
order to cope during this parliament but in order to be able to absorb
the impact of a second phase of austerity after the general election.
The three Ss of sharing, saving and stewardship have served our
residents very well and are the best means of enabling us to face
some further years of austerity with confidence, said Council Leader,
Cllr Nick Paget-Brown.
Along the way we have faced some testing decisions but those have
so far been about doing things differently rather than not doing them
at all. We mean that to stay the case for as long as we can possibly
Despite the decision to continue the freeze on council tax, the Council
in January ordered an exception to be made for homes that have
been left empty for two years or more. From 1 April 2015 these will
pay a 150 per cent rate. This will affect about 600 properties of a total
of nearly 88,000 residential properties.
Greg Hands MP commented: "Kensington and Chelsea continues to
be one of the best-run Councils in London, and I congratulate Nick
Paget-Brown and his team on continUing to deliver high quality public
services at a good price."

Kensington Leisure Centre opens Monday

2 March 2015
A brand new Kensington Leisure Centre opens to the public on
Monday 2 March 2015, thanks to a 29.4m investment from the Royal
Borough of Kensington and Chelsea.
The new centre is one of the very finest in London.
For swimmers there is a 25-metre, eight-lane swimming pool, a 20metre teaching pool with mobile floor, and gala spectators can watch
from a 250-seat gallery.
There is also a 120-station gym which boasts the latest cardio and
resistance machines, free weights and functional fitness kit from
Technogym and D2F.
In addition there is an eight-court multi-use sports hall, two fitness
studios and sauna/steam facilities with treatment rooms.
And for residents who prefer to take their exercise in classes, a wide
range will be on offer, including power pump, group cycle, aerobics,
abs blast, step and sculpt, bums tums and thighs, box-fit, water
workout, yoga, Pilates and Brazilian dance.
Councillor Tim Ahern, Cabinet Member for Leisure, said: The new
leisure centre is absolutely stunning and we can legitimately boast
that it is one of the best in London with facilities to rival the top private
Physical exercise is one of the most important things we can do to
stay healthy and the range of facilities and classes on offer mean
there is an activity to suit every age group.
Work on the project began in December 2012 and the new centre, on
Silchester Road, replaces one built in the mid-1970s, which itself
replaced the Victorian Lancaster Road baths.
For more information on the new Kensington Leisure centre visit

Consultation begins on Supplementary

Planning Document on Basements in
On 21 January 2015 the Council adopted a new policy for dealing with
planning permission for basement development, Policy CL7:
Basements, which forms part of the Local Plan.
The Council has now produced a draft Supplementary Planning
Document (SPD) on Basements. The draft document provides more
detailed guidance and advice on adopted Core Strategy Policy CL7:
Basements. It is designed to help applicants make successful
planning applications and for residents to understand the various
issues that the Council will consider in assessing planning
applications. It will replace the existing SPD on Subterranean
Development, 2009.
The Council is consulting on the Draft Basements SPD for six weeks,
starting from Wednesday 18 February until Wednesday 1 April 2015.
The Draft Basements SPD and an online response form are available

Week in Westminster and Constituency

Look Ahead 27th February
23-27 February 2015: This week in Westminster
Nuisance calls
I strongly welcome the announcement this week that changes to the
law from April 2015 will help to clamp down on nuisance calls and
texts. For far too long companies have bombarded people with
unwanted marketing calls and texts, and escaped punishment. The
change will make it easier for the Information Commissioners Office
to take action against offenders and send a clear message to others
that harassing consumers with nuisance calls or texts is not on. The
changes will now make it easier for those firms responsible to be hit
with fines of up to 500,000. More detail on these changes to the rules
can be found here.
Marriage Tax Break
The Government has this week opened registration for the new
Marriage Allowance that will mean more than 4 million married
couples and 15,000 civil partnerships will be eligible for the tax break.
I would encourage my constituents who may be able to benefit from
this measure to check their eligibility and register. More details on the
allowance and how to register can be found here.
Upcoming Events in the Fulham part of the Constituency (for a
full list of local events, check out local website Those Who Noes
Fulham -
Wednesday, March 4, 2015, 16:00 - 17:30
Whole Foods Market Fulham, 3-6 Fulham Broadway Fulham, London
Paperbirds London hosts another kids craft club at Whole Foods
Market Fulham on 4 March 2015 from 4.00-5.30pm.
Drop off for children aged 4-10 years. Tickets 10. Book on line at
website below, email, or pay on
the day, but please note spaces are limited.
Visit website >>
Thursday, March 5, 2015, 18:30 - 20:00
Dawes Road Hub, 20 Dawes Rd, London, SW6 7EN
The next meeting for the North End Road Action Group will be on
Thursday 5 March at 6.30 pm at the Dawes Road Hub, 20 Dawes
Road, SW6 7EN. This is very near the North End Road end of Dawes
Jonathan Owen from, a company with
considerable experience of regenerating markets, will be joining to
discuss ideas for improving North End Road.
Eveybody welcome but if you're planning to attend please email to let him know.
Friday, March 6, 2015, 19:45 - 21:45
Craven Cottage, Stevenage Rd, SW6 6HH
Fulham v AFC Bournemouth, Kick off at 7.45 pm
Please visit Fulham FC website for more information about match and
tickets. Visit website >>

5 ways to contact Greg Hands M.P.:

By Phone:
By email:
By post:
In person:

020 7219 5448
Greg Hands M.P.
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA
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Greg Hands M.P.s weekly

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