"Reports suggesting that the Localism Bill will allow the introduction of smoking bans in public places are wide off the mark. There is nothing in this Bill that provides additional powers to prohibit smoking in open spaces or in private cars."Nothing in the Bill at the time of that quote, no. But then, the final wording hasn't been decided yet, has it?
In fact, according to the BBC's Democracy Live, they'll be discussing exactly that in the Lords tonight. And just look at the amendment Baroness Gardner of Parkes* has submitted to proceedings.
193 Insert the following new Clause—Baroness Gardner, by the way, is a Tory.
“Power to make byelaws about smoke-free places
(1) A local authority may make byelaws designating as smoke-free any place or description of place that is not smoke-free under section 2 of the Health Act 2006.
(2) The place, or places falling within the description, need not be enclosed or substantially enclosed.
(3) The byelaws may provide for such places, or places falling within the description, to be smoke-free only—(a) in specified circumstances,(4) Terms used in this section have the same meanings as in the Health Act 2006.”
(b) at specified times,
(c) if specified conditions are satisfied,
(d) in specified areas,
or any combination of those.
Now, she could just be an irritating old pecksniff - her other amendment enabling councils to force homeowners to decorate at their neighbours' request suggests as much.
I do hope so, because if the Conservative machine has nudged her into dropping this amendment in where most wouldn't notice it, they're slippery two-faced maggots. And if Trixie has been prompted by ASH ... well, it'd be just more proof that they are a political lobby group and shouldn't be classed as a charity, wouldn't it?
As for Bob Neill, perhaps we'll need to have a word or two with him should this amendment get passed.
* Another bloody interfering Aussie!