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Following the departmental change of name from BERR to BIS there has been a reshuffle within BIS by the Lord Mandelson. He has appointed Mr Ian Lucas MP as the minister with responsibility for the Insolvency Service. The new brief for Mr Lucas as Minister for Business and Regulatory Reform includes:
"Responsible for business sectors (aerospace; marine and defence, automotive; chemicals; construction; manufacturing, materials and engineering; retail; services), Better Regulation Executive, better regulation within BIS, Olympic legacy, sustainable development and regulation including waste electrical and electronic equipment issues, Corporate Social Responsibility, corporate governance, Companies Act, Companies House, Insolvency Service (including companies investigations), export control."
Mr Lucas replaces Mr Pat McFadden MP who stays on at BIS in a different role. Mr Lucas is a solicitor by training and holds a law degree from New College, Oxford. The recent expenses scandal has not affected Mr Lucas as far as my research can ascertain in any dramatic way. Although the BBC does note:
"Claim: Mr Lucas - MP for Wrexham and a government whip - claimed approximately £1,000 a month for mortgage interest payments on a London flat, which he sold for a £45,000 profit, the Daily Telegraph said. Taxpayers were then billed £6,000 for sale fees. Mr Lucas then claimed almost £4,000 for staying in hotels before buying a new flat and claiming for stamp duty, purchasing fees, furniture and mortgage interest payments. He also spent £550 on a "hip hop" bed and extra-firm mattress, and £838 on a sofa bed.
Response: The MP said he been "scrupulous" in adhering to the rules, adding that he was "confident that I have achieved the appropriate balance between seeking the support I need to perform my duties as MP for Wrexham, and responsible use of the allowances available to me".
It will be interesting to note how his appointment affects current initiatives, such as the CVA consultation document.
"This is the ultimate statement of where the law on IVAs is to be found in our great common law...