Coronavirus

April 7th, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Local Authority Powers

Further sets of Regulations are “ intended to be made in the coming weeks “ under the Coronavirus Act 2000, including Regulations to relax the date for the completion and publication of Annual Accounts, and further Regulations with Election-related provisions.

 

Judicial Review

April 7th, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Judicial Control, Liability and Litigation

In Packham v SOS for Transport (2020) EWHC 829 (Admin) a Divisional Court said that:

(1) When dealing matters depending essentially upon political judgment, matters of national economic policy and the like, the Court will interfere on grounds only of bad faith, improper notice or manifest absurdity : para 55; and

(2) Whether there is a failure to take into account a relevant consideration that the decision maker is obliged to take into account has nothing to do with the different question of whether a decision is vitiated by error of fact : the two should not be eluded or confused : para 51.

 

State Aid

April 6th, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Capital Finance and Companies

The House of Lords EU Internal Market Sub-Committee record that the Government lacks a clear understanding of what State Aid provisions it signed up to in the Protocol on Ireland/Northern Ireland, that the details of its subsidy control regime remain unknown, and that the role of the CMA in the future subsidy control framework remains uncertain.

 

Disabled Facilities

April 3rd, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Housing

R (McKeown) v Islington LBC (2020) EWHC 779 (Admin) quashes a refusal by the Council of Disabled Facilities Grant under the Housing Grants etc Act 1996. An application by a council tenant must be treated on the same basis as an application by an owner occupier. It is irrelevant whether the accommodation is suitable for a disabled person.

 

Coronavirus Regulations

April 3rd, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Decision making and Contracts

Explanatory Notes to S.I. 2020/392 state :

It will be possible to make secondary legislation to bring forward the end date of 7 May 2021 “ if social distancing rules are relaxed or removed on the basis of medical and scientific advice”: para 3.4.

The Government does not intend to issue Guidance : para 11.1

 

Remote Attendance, Meetings and Public Access

April 3rd, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Decision making and Contracts

The Local Authorities etc (Coronavirus) (Flexibility of Meetings) ( England and Wales) Regulations 2020, S.I. 2020/392 contain 4 Parts. Part 1, Regs 1-3, is General. It and Part 4, Police and Crime Panels, apply to England and Wales. Parts 2 and 3 apply to England only. Part 2 relates to Remote Attendance and consists of Regs 4&5. Part 3 relates to Modification of Meetings and Public Access Requirements. It consists of Regs 6-17. The Regs apply to Meetings that are required to be held, or held, before 7 May next year. Reg 3 relates to Interpretation, including “local authority” and “local authority meeting”.

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Caravan Site

April 2nd, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Planning and Environmental

Amber Valley BC v Haytop Country Park Ltd (2020) UKUT 68 (LC) is concerned with a caravan site licence under the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960, as amended, and 2014 Regulations there under. There was a dispute, which is in the course of determination, as to whether the proposed use by Haytop would be a breach of planning consent. The UT rules that the FTT should not have required the grant of a licence by the Council to Haytop where what Haytop wanted to do might be outside the terms of the current planning permission.

 

Meetings

April 2nd, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Decision making and Contracts

The Local Authorities etc ( Flexibility of Meetings ) Regulations 2020, S.I. 2020/392, have been made on 1 April 2020, and come into force on 4 April 2020, enabling local authority meetings to be held remotely. They are not identical to the draft Regulations.

 

Residence Requirement

April 2nd, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Local Authority Powers

A residence requirement with respect to bearing of school transport costs may be unlawfully discriminatory, as in Case C-830/18, Landkreis Sudliche Weinstrasse v PF.

 

Homelessness Appeals

April 2nd, 2020 by James Goudie QC in Housing

In James v Hertsmere BC (2020) EWCA 489 rules that the scope of Section 204 of the Housing Act 1996 on appeal to the County Court on point of law in homelessness cases extends to the full range of issues that would otherwise be the subject of an application to the Administrative Court for judicial review. The Court also held that when there is constitutionally  delegated  authority to extend an intra vires contract, such as a contract that contracts out the Section 202 review function, then, if the extension may not have been done validly at the time, it can be ratified.