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News, gossip and insight from PoliticsHome Editor Paul Waugh

Burying Bad News?

With the euro crisis consuming all before it, perhaps some in Government think today is a good day to bury bad news.

A look at the Order Paper of the Commons reveals a raft of items that would normally attract more attention.

We have a Home Office announcement on police funding and an Eric Pickles announcement on council funding that will inevitably include school spending as well as town hall cuts. There's even a Michael Gove written ministerial statement on academies funding.

In each case, could we see fresh details of the squeeze on spending?

There is also a WMS on 'court notification of drink driving offences'. The Telegraph has details of this, described by one insider as a 'horror' of an announcement. It turns out that upto 8,000 drink drivers have been handed back their licences without proper checks. Two of them went on to kill in motoring accidents.

There are also two DEFRA items that could slip under the radar: the publication of the interim report by the Independent Panel on Forestry (confirming the U-turn on the sell-off) and the Water White Paper publication.

The Water White Paper could have some hidden details of how our bills may go up, as well as an extension of water meters. Curiously, DEFRA have decided to hold a briefing this morning - even though environment correspondents are in Durban for the climate change summit.

The shift in pensions policy for the NHS also hides a real sting in the tail for doctors, senior nurses and midwives: a hike in their contributions. Lansley will prefer to focus on a one-year reprieve for lower paid staff. Bizarrely this is not in the form of a Written Ministerial Statement. Will Labour demand an Urgent Question that will force Lansley into making an Oral Statement.

Maybe this truly is a day to 'bring out the dead'?

 

 

UPDATE: There were those who thought this blog was being overly cynical.

Well, it looks like the police budget was cut by a further £700m today. Shadow Policing Minister David Hanson has been on the offensive.

As for council cuts, here's the detail.

As for academies, it turns out they were mistakenly given £300,000 extra in funds.

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