Queen’s Speech 2015 - CILT(UK)
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Queen’s Speech 2015

The government's legislative plans for the year ahead have been unveiled in the Queen's Speech to Parliament. Here is a guide to the bills that will influence our industry.

Cities and Local Government Devolution Bill
This paves the way for powers over housing, transport, planning and policing to be devolved to England's cities as part of government plans for "a balanced economic recovery". Cities that want them will be able to have elected mayors. Chancellor George Osborne has said previously that Greater Manchester - which will take on the powers when electing a mayor in two years - should become a blueprint for other large cities.

HS2 Bill
The government is pressing ahead with legislation that will eventually enable work to start on the £50bn HS2 high-speed rail link. Legislation which will give the government the legal powers to construct and operate the London to Birmingham first phase of HS2 is going through Parliament. If it progresses smoothly, it should receive Royal Assent around the end of 2016, with work beginning on the project in 2017, with a finishing date of 2026.

Buses Bill
This bill would provide the option for combined authority areas with directly-elected mayors to be responsible for the running of their local bus services. The government says the move would allow cities to promote an integrated transport system.

EU Referendum Bill
This will pave the way for an in/out referendum on Britain's membership of the European Union. David Cameron has promised to renegotiate Britain's relationship with the 28-member bloc and put it to a public vote by 2017 at the latest. There is speculation it could be held as early as autumn 2016.

Full Employment and Welfare Benefits Bill
This bill has been designed to achieve full employment and “provide more people with the security of a job". The aim is for two million more jobs and three million new apprenticeships to be created. Ministers will be required to report annually to Parliament on their progress.

Energy Bill
Measures will be introduced to "increase energy security" and ensure there will be "affordable and reliable energy for businesses and families". The government proposes to establish the Oil and Gas Authority as an independent regulator, charged with regulation of domestic oil and gas recovery.

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