Cabinet to finalise Queen’s Speech

Published: Tuesday 26th May 2015 by The News Editor

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David Cameron is gathering his Cabinet to finalise the first Tory-only Queen’s Speech for nearly two decades.

The Government’s programme is set to include a flagship Bill to hold an in/out EU referendum by 2017, as well as implementing key manifesto pledges such as extending the Right to Buy scheme to 1.3 million housing association tenants.

There are also expected to be controversial proposals for replacing the Human Rights Act with a Bill of Rights, reforming strike laws, and curbing benefits.

Other legislation will guarantee no rises in income tax, VAT or National Insurance before 2020, and promise that no-one working 30 hours on the minimum wage will pay income tax.

With a narrow majority, the Prime Minister faces a challenging task to keep his 330 MPs together and avoid revolts on issues such as the timing and ground rules for the referendum and human rights rules.

Speaking before Cabinet, new Communities Secretary Greg Clark dismissed criticism of the plans to broaden Right to Buy.

“We know that consistently over many years that nearly 90% – 86% – of people want to own their own home,” he told the BBC Radio 4 Today programme.

“That has fallen, it has started to rise, but I think just because you have signed a social tenancy you shouldn’t be signing away your aspiration forever to own your own home.

“We know council tenants have the ability to own their own home through Right to Buy and we think it’s fair to extend that to housing association tenants.”

Published: Tuesday 26th May 2015 by The News Editor

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