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Results 101–120 of 700 for (in the 'Commons debates' OR in the 'Westminster Hall debates' OR in the 'Lords debates' OR in the 'Northern Ireland Assembly debates') speaker:Lord Cotter

Further Education: Funding — Question (25 Mar 2010)

Lord Cotter: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills whether he undertook a cost-benefit analysis before deciding to reduce the funding of adult education in further education colleges.

Further Education: Funding — Question (25 Mar 2010)

Lord Cotter: I thank the Secretary of State. The importance of skills training has been emphasised time and again. It is concerning that my local college, Weston College, reports that £1.7 million is being taken away from the £6.7 million allocated to adult learners in the area. In addition, vulnerable adults over 25 and those with severe learning difficulties are not getting support at all. Surely this...

Additional Statutory Paternity Pay (General) Regulations 2010 — Motion to Approve (18 Mar 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, taken overall, these measures are to be welcomed, which we do from these Benches. Some people will have concerns about the details but the principles are right. I am glad, though, that the Minister referred to small businesses when he introduced them. As has been said so often, it is unfair that one parent, the mother, has to take the full burden of looking after a child and unfair...

National Minimum Wage — Debate (11 Mar 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Morris, for introducing this timely debate on a very important issue. He is right to point out that rates have risen generally, not only for those at the lower end of the scale but right through and upwards. Clearly this has resulted in a closing of the gap for minorities and vulnerable people and we should all support it. The noble Lord, Lord Watson,...

Credit Card Debt — Question (4 Mar 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, I am sure the Minister will recollect that my colleague Vince Cable warned about credit card debt three years ago. However, would the Minister agree that we face a double whammy situation? On the one hand, people are still being encouraged to borrow at a time when interest rates are at a 12-year high. On the other, a recent National Audit Office report shows that debt agencies and...

Businesses: Late Payment of Debts — Question (4 Mar 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, I hear what the Minister says but, despite that, a survey by the FSB last month disclosed that local government pays one in four invoices late and that central government and agencies pay one in three late. Will the Minister consider that again? As part of the solution there is a call for a social clause to be inserted into contracts. If payments are not made within time, there...

Self-employment — Question (25 Feb 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, I must say to the Secretary of State that bureaucracy is a problem with regard to self-employment. Many people who have just entered self-employment have been fined for failing to register as self-employed quickly enough. In 2009, more than 23,000 people were fined for registering late. Many people going into small business do not realise that there are all those requirements. I...

Banks: Lending — Question (25 Feb 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords-

Banks: Lending — Question (25 Feb 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, a moment ago, the Secretary of State referred to the fact that there is a lack of demand for borrowing. I suggest to him that in fact the problem is the hurdles which people have to overcome, such as very high interests rates, bureaucracy, new charges, audits, facility fees, reviews and management fees. Does he agree that many of those hurdles are new and that they discourage small...

Digital Economy Bill [HL]: Committee (6th Day) (3 Feb 2010)

Lord Cotter: I thank all noble Lords who have voiced their support for this proposal and agree that this is an issue of some concern. I also thank the Minister for accepting that this is an important matter. It is encouraging that the Minister has said it is important and could well need to be addressed at some future date. I would then expect the Government to follow this through. Going back to the...

Digital Economy Bill [HL]: Committee (6th Day) (3 Feb 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, I draw attention to an issue on practical, environmental and financial grounds. My concern is that old analogue radios that are no longer required should be disposed of in an environmentally acceptable way. It is clear that many individual parts of such radios have a recycling value, and we do not want piles of radios to be disposed of in landfills or wherever else. I read in a...

Taxation — Debate (28 Jan 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, does the Minister not acknowledge the widespread criticism of clarity on taxation through HMRC's website? Many people alluded to that and I think that clarity and explanation are much desired by business.

Taxation — Debate (28 Jan 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, I thank the noble Lord, Lord Selsdon, for his tributes to the Liberal Democrats and to the questions that we ask; it is the Opposition's role to ask questions of Government. A 0.1 per cent rise in economic growth is obviously better than none at all, but it undoubtedly means that everything must be done to nudge forward and sustain recovery. When it comes to business, and to small...

Severe Weather: Transport Networks and Public Services — Statement (11 Jan 2010)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, will the Minister look at the issue of school closures? Undoubtedly some schools have had to close for good reason, but parents have been in touch with me to express concern that in other cases perhaps, as the noble Lord, Lord Bradshaw, referred to, timidity has come along rather than robustness and schools have been closed that were not required to be closed. Perhaps schools are...

Teesside Cast Products — Question (10 Dec 2009)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, as time goes past we are learning about the tragedy and disaster in Teesside. It has been welcome in recent times that there has been talk about diversifying from financial services to manufacturing and innovation. In that connection, the Government's plan for £60 million in aid for steel is very welcome. I urge them to involve all local people-by that, I mean employers, employees...

Apprenticeships — Question (7 Dec 2009)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, with the enactment of the apprenticeships Bill, there is concern that there will be a requirement for prescribed standards-in particular, for off-workplace training. Does the Minister agree that we need to listen to employers and businesses to meet their concerns and to ensure that the apprenticeship schemes meet their particular requirements, which can be special in many cases?

Queen's Speech — Debate (5th Day) (25 Nov 2009)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, there was little in the Queen's Speech on legislation for business, but perhaps this is a good thing in one way as we do not want any more regulatory burdens to be placed on business, as has been said this afternoon. I hope that things will change but, in my 11 years in politics at the parliamentary level, I have come up against a brick wall. In what respect, you may ask? My working...

Skills for Growth — Statement (11 Nov 2009)

Lord Cotter: I thank the Secretary of State for today's Statement about skills. It is important to emphasise this field and I very much agree with what has been put forward. Will he consider one area which is of concern—that is, careers advice? It should be ensured that careers advice is top-rate in both schools and jobcentres. Perhaps the Minister will look into this. I give just one instance. Last...

Unemployment — Question (20 Oct 2009)

Lord Cotter: My Lords, does the Minister agree that, as has been mentioned already, it is very important that young people are given every opportunity possible? Internships have been mentioned. Does he agree that it is important that, while they are there, people are also treated fairly through internships and that opportunities are given as soon as possible to provide paid work? Volunteering is another...

Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Bill: Committee (8th Day) (15 Oct 2009)

Lord Cotter: I follow my noble friend in supporting what the noble Lord, Lord Layard, said a moment ago. My interest in the House stems from my interest in small businesses. I have been in small business all my life. I am reassured that we are still raising the issue of exactly how to see that there will be enough apprenticeship opportunities in this country and talking about how this could be funded....

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