Sunday, 13 March 2011

And they are off, the race to create the first ...

... made in Wales legislation without Westminster is on, and what a race, a race between those that would  slaughter Badgers and those that would harvest Human Organs without your approval; you would have thought that the priority would have been Health or Education or even our bereft Economy.

Prior warnings by political pundits have been ignored, washed over, subsumed in the dross of political expediency, we are about to embark on a journey without a political lifeboat; and there is nothing that can be done to mitigate the effects of the two Bills that will be supported by a coalition of such magnitude it rides roughshod over any opposition.

Hat Tip Peter Black AM on the proceedings at the Assembly that demonstrate a dictatorship ...

Peter Black: I wish to focus on the welfare of protected species and, in particular, the Order that you have announced today for the control of bovine tuberculosis in the north Pembrokeshire, Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire area. You will know that, between January and November 2010, there was a 34 per cent reduction on the previous year in the number of cattle slaughtered as a result of TB. That appears to be a long-term trend. Therefore, in making the decision to bring forward this Order, what estimate have you made of the reduction in the incidence of TB that will come about as a result of the cull that you are proposing in this area?

Elin Jones: I am not sure how you can say that the statistics from January to October of last year signify a long-term trend. I must look at the longer-term trend of the disease. There have been times when fewer cattle have been removed than at other times during the trend of an increase over the last 10 years: 2006 was a case in point, and, as the statistics outline, 2010 may be another. I will not make judgements on how the statistics over that period relate to a longer-term trend. We have to assess the longer-term trend over the longer term. That is what I have to do. It is too early to say whether the cattle testing and removal measures that we have put in place as a Government have had a direct impact on the short-term statistics to which you have alluded.

Peter Black: What is the estimate?

The Presiding Officer: Order.
It is a dreadful day when the Presiding Officer prevents further questioning, in this case by Peter Black, is this democracy in action or the suppression of debate. In our unicameral Assembly there is so little debate that our democracy could be referred to as a dictatorship.

Thanks to the input from two readers, I modified my proposed recall to extend the period for recall from three days to five, this is because the plenary session is held every Wednesday, a five workday lapsed period, and the final paragraph is simplified.

Legislative Recall and Referendum

Where a Bill has been passed by the Welsh Assembly, one-third of the members of the Welsh Assembly may, within five weekdays from the final passing of the Bill, request of the Plenary Chair that the Bill be submitted to a referendum. Such request shall be made in writing and signed by the members making the request.

At the referendum votes shall be cast for or against the Bill. For the Bill to be rejected, a majority of the electors who vote, and not less than thirty per cent of all persons who are entitled to vote, shall have voted against the Bill.

Finance Bills, Salaries and Pensions Bills, Taxation (Direct and Indirect) Bills, UK and European Union government Bills, as well as Bills for the purpose of discharging existing treaty obligations shall not be submitted to decision by referendum.
It seems the petition should be worded so that the Welsh Assembly Government petitions the UK Government to include the proposal into the Government of Wales Act 2006 at section 114 or 115, for those interested the Act may be read here.

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