Results 1–20 of 2493 for speaker:Baroness Kramer

Economic Environment: Growth and Jobs - Motion to Take Note (11 Jul 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, I begin by picking up the issues raised by the noble Viscount, Lord Chandos, who made it clear that we cannot talk about anything to do with the economy without a real awareness of Brexit. It sets the framework; I know we do not want to focus on it today, but it is worth a comment or two here. Many people are acting as though uncertainty is something that exists until we decide to...

Economic Environment: Growth and Jobs - Motion to Take Note (11 Jul 2019)

Baroness Kramer: The noble Baroness, Lady Neville-Rolfe, is being kind to me in raising the issue of business rates because, as she knows, my party supports a policy of abolishing them—they are part of a Victorian past—and replacing them with a commercial landowner levy. I do not want to try the patience of the House in the time allocated by taking noble Lords through the details, but it is one of the...

Multi-academy Trusts - Question (10 Jul 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, as my noble friend Lord Storey’s initial Question implied, wrongdoing, abuse and mistakes are nearly always exposed by whistleblowers rather than by any official monitoring mechanism. From my work with the APPG on Whistleblowing, it is very evident that whistleblowers in this area rarely know to whom they can safely complain or report. Retaliation is exceedingly common. Would the...

NHS Pensions: Taxation - Private Notice Question (9 Jul 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, the BMA makes it clear that the Defence Medical Services are the most impacted group of medics. Will the Minister confirm that we are today sending medics out to battlefields such as Afghanistan, who work all hours to serve their wounded comrades and are having to call home to tell their families to take out a second mortgage to pay an unexpected £20,000 to £40,000 tax bill, which...

Soil Health - Question (8 Jul 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, forgive me if this is because of my lack of understanding but when the Minister answered my noble friend Lady Parminter, who questioned whether measures would be included in the Bill, he said a lot of good things about the measures. However, I did not understand whether they were to be in the Bill or not. Can he possibly clarify?

Small and Medium-sized Enterprises: Mistreatment - Question for Short Debate (27 Jun 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, RBS’s inappropriate handling of its SME customers predates the period examined by Promontory and goes back to at least 2005. We know this because there have been whistleblowers, key among them Mark Wright, who gives me permission to use his name in this debate and who alerted senior management at RBS—up to CEO level as early as 2005 and chair level as early as 2006—and...

National Insurance Contributions (Termination Awards and Sporting Testimonials) Bill - Second Reading (26 Jun 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, I intend to be very brief on the Bill and I certainly will not oppose it, but I want to pick up a couple of issues raised by the noble Lord, Lord Macpherson, from a slightly different angle. I follow the logic of keeping national insurance contributions so that, essentially, they track the pattern of income tax—though I am delighted by the Minister’s assurance that this is not...

GDP per Capita - Question (11 Jun 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, the impact of the 2008 financial crash and the economic troubles that followed it was far greater outside London and the south-east than it was in this area. Since we are going into a period where the economy is weakening—we have had very poor first-quarter figures and the US economy looks like it is beginning to move into recession—what measures do the Government have in place...

National Health Service: Pensions - Question (10 Jun 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, senior officers in the armed services face the same problem. I raise this because I know that the Minister will follow up on it. One showed me his tax returns: a £5,000 increase in income led to an additional tax payment—in just the first year—of just under £17,000. This is driving away not only senior officers but especially the high-fliers who, with early promotion, get into...

Employment - Motion to Take Note (6 Jun 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, well, follow that speech! I feel unfortunate to stand up at this moment, but fortunate that the noble Lord, Lord Leigh, has achieved this debate. I congratulate him, because so often when we talk about employment, in Parliamentary Questions or in passing in a broader economic debate, it is at the very superficial level of numbers announced the day or week before. I have found...

Kew Gardens (Leases) (No. 3) Bill [HL] - Report: Amendment 2 (5 Jun 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, I should like to take this opportunity to thank the Minister for the very detailed letter he sent me on the car park, which I think other Members have seen. I had some underlying concerns that it might be a site for development because it is right on the river, but he was able to reassure me that all the protections that apply to Kew apply also to the car park property; even though...

Kew Gardens (Leases) (No. 3) Bill [HL] - Report: Amendment 1 (5 Jun 2019)

Baroness Kramer: To reassure the Minister, I certainly received a copy of it; I believe my noble friend did as well. I do not know whether other noble Lords did, but it was an extremely reassuring letter.

British Steel - Statement (22 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, can the Minister help me understand the situation so as to better understand the appropriate response? Is he describing a company that in a sense is unlikely to be viable in any normalised market condition or a company that is in fact both efficient, producing high-quality goods with appropriate costs, but also suddenly in trouble because its primary European customers, afraid of...

Kew Gardens (Leases) (No. 3) Bill [HL] - Committee: Amendment 2 (21 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: Can the Minister tell us—clearly not now—what the status is of that car park land? It sits outside the wall of Kew Gardens, so I am not sure how far it is covered by any of the protections he has mentioned, even though it is the obvious site if you were going to have a commercial development. It would be extremely helpful to know what the protection is there.

Kew Gardens (Leases) (No. 3) Bill [HL] - Committee: Amendment 2 (21 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, perhaps I may suggest to the Minister a fairly straightforward way out of this. If I understand the House correctly—of course, I may not—and look at my own view, I do not think anyone has a problem with granting 150-year leases to the seven properties on Kew Green. As the Minister said, six are listed; the seventh is still within a conservation area. No matter what its political...

Kew Gardens (Leases) (No. 3) Bill [HL] - Committee: Amendment 1 (21 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords—

Kew Gardens (Leases) (No. 3) Bill [HL] - Committee: Amendment 1 (21 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: Perhaps I may just ask the Minister a question purely for clarification. I am not the slightest bit fussed about the seven houses on Kew Green as they are all under conservation orders and the local council will certainly be able to prevent any inappropriate development. We can also count on the fact that, no matter what the political colour of the council, the residents will make sure that...

Banks: Fraud Prevention - Question (20 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, it is beyond me why this code remains voluntary, creating an opportunity for banks to opt out of the system if they so wish when it offers only the most basic and minimal protection against fraudsters. Anyone going into a bank to move money by wire transfer, which I do for safety’s sake, is asked a series of questions about the payee; the bank also takes other steps because it...

Companies (Directors’ Remuneration Policy and Directors’ Remuneration Report) Regulations 2019 - Motion to Approve (8 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, the content of this statutory instrument is all good stuff, in my view. Greater transparency, enhancement of shareholders’ rights to challenge around remuneration, comparators now with senior executives and average pay within organisations—I would have thought that this was something we would embrace with enthusiasm. Indeed, I hope that the UK was very much engaged in the...

Financial Services (Miscellaneous) (Amendment) (EU Exit) (No. 2) Regulations 2019 - Motion to Approve (7 May 2019)

Baroness Kramer: My Lords, I am so glad I did not have to write the content of this SI; it was hard enough trying to work one’s way through it when simply reading it. It is obviously the result of a combination of “Oops!” and communication with customers. I see absolutely no reason to oppose it. If anything, this underscores the complexity of trying to make arrangements for dealing with a no-deal...

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