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Therese Coffey

On 4th March 2019 I submitted a complaint to the Prime Minister, Theresa May, that DEFRA Minister, Therese Coffey, had misled Parliament when the new Littering from Vehicles Regulations were approved by Parliament.

It was never explained to MPs and the Lords that the Regulations would not apply to offences committed on the motorways.

I received a rebuttal from DEFRA on 26th March 2019.

I responded directly to No 10 on 9th April disposing of each of DEFRA’s points paragraph by paragraph.

None of these documents made it clear that, as a consequence of only enabling councils, the regulations would not apply to offences committed on the motorways and some HE trunk roads

To progress matters I wrote to Sir Mark Sedwill, the Cabinet Secretary, on 7th May with a copy of the previous correspondence asking him to draw the matter to a prompt conclusion.

On 23rd May I received a letter from the Correspondence Officer at No 10 thanking me for my letter to the PM of 9th April but saying saying that they were unable to add anything to DEFRA’s response of 26th March.

Tamara Finkelstein

But on 19th June Tamara Finkelstein was promoted to become the new Permanent Secretary at DEFRA. The very next day she wrote me a “Dear Peter” letter thanking me for my letter to Sir Mark (her boss ). He had asked her to respond.

Unfortunately, she merely repeated some of the points I had already rebutted and ended by saying DEFRA could not assist further in this case.

I therefore wrote to Sir Mark on 24th June reprising the relevant counter arguments and saying:

Sir Mark, could you please now advise the Prime Minister to determine my complaint against Ms Coffey one way or the other

Peter Silverman
2nd July 2019

 

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