There is a great deal to look forward to in 2020 as the Government prepares to embark upon the programme set out by the Conservatives during the General Election campaign to unleash Britain’s potential and deliver on our promises.
The Government has already reintroduced the Withdrawal Agreement Bill which will bring to an end nearly three and a half years of uncertainty and division which followed the EU referendum in 2016. I am very pleased that this landmark legislation passed its second reading in the House of Commons shortly before Christmas. It is important for the new Parliament to get Brexit done by January 31st in order to move on to the other priorities set out in the Queen’s Speech.
This ambitious programme will bring forward legislation to deliver on the priorities that people in Rugby and Bulkington spoke to me about during the election campaign – supporting our NHS, protecting our natural environment and investing in opportunity for everyone in the UK. The Government will enshrine in law a long-term funding settlement which will provide an extra £33.9 billion per year for the National Health Service. This is the largest cash injection in the history of the NHS and demonstrates how seriously the Government takes funding the NHS.
This year will also see a radical programme on reform to safeguard our natural environment both at home and throughout the world. Alongside the UK’s world-leading target of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, the Environment Bill will create a new Office for Environmental Protection and strengthen powers to tackle air pollution. There will also be increased maximum sentences for animal cruelty and finally banning the import and export of trophies from endangered animals. This work is vital to ensure that the environment is protected for the next generation.
As your representative in Parliament, I will be working to ensure that our area gets its fair share. That work begins with focusing on our local health services and I will be speaking to Ministers in the Department for Health and Social Care about opportunities for investment in our local hospital of St Cross as Rugby grows.
Finally, I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone in Rugby a happy and successful New Year.
Mark Pawsey MP