Last week the new agreement between the Government and the DUP was put to its first test with the vote on the Queen’s Speech, the Government’s programme for the new session.
The motion passed with a majority of 13 but not before a lot of opportunistic grandstanding by Jeremy Corbyn’s newly invigorated Labour opposition who came a very creditable second in the recent General Election, though some of them think they won!
They tried to link the Queen’s Speech with an attempt to raise the cap on public sector pay, which is something I support but only in a way that you can show how it can be paid for. That will come with the forthcoming Budget, as I have explained in the blog in my newsletter and would urge constituents to read as I am afraid that some have been sold a pup in the distorted publicity surrounding the vote.
It also has significant implications for the pay bill for teachers where our biggest priority at the moment remains getting a decent resolution to the fair funding for schools crisis. On that point I have now invited all the heads in my constituency to tell me the state of their budgets at first hand and the very real challenges they are facing so I can take up the cudgels again with ministers.
All of a sudden last Thursday my mobile phone went mad. A few hours later I had scores of new best friends.
For the first time in 20 years I had come up in the ballot for private members’ bills, and at number five I was the top-placed Conservative MP. This means that my bill stands a chance of becoming law, so not surprisingly a lot of people have some bright ideas for what would make the best addition to the statute book.
Suggestions so far have been pretty diverse and I have a couple of weeks to decide the subject so do let me know if you have any burning issues you would like me to consider.
Well done to the organisers of the Sompting Festival which was surely one of the biggest and best yet. It was a great joint venture between Sompting Big Local and two new hard-working parish councillors in particular, Anne Godley and Paul Mansfield. There were some great local organisations represented and some real talent entertaining the crowds in the arena.
And if you were health conscious and didn’t linger too long at the hot dog stand then there was the opportunity to blend your own mango smoothie courtesy of an exercise bike. Good to see this often neglected corner of Adur reminding everyone what a great community we have in Sompting,
• If you would like to get in touch with me, please write to me at the House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA, or email me at email@example.com
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