11th May 2011
As I tour the South West and talk to people one issue is mentioned again and again, namely the EU Accounts and their failure to be signed off each year by the Court of Auditors. We may only have recently started a new financial year but it is the same annual story once again. For the 16th year in a row the EU's Court of Auditors has been unwilling to give the accounts a statement of assurance. Once again there were flaws in the accounts, and despite opposition from Conservative MEPs and our allies in the European Conservatives and Reformist (ECR) Group, they have been accepted by European politicians.
12th April 2011
The announcement by the French Europe Minister that a challenge to the European Parliament's two-seat operation would result in counter-actions to change the seats of other EU institutions (report, 11th April) highlights how petulant and isolated the French have become on this issue.
28th March 2011
I recently attended a No2AV event in Weymouth with South Dorset MP, Richard Drax. On 5 May all registered electors will be given the opportunity to decide by what system we elect our MPs. The choice is between the current First Past the Post system (FPTP) or the Alternative Vote (AV) system as currently used in Australia, Fiji and Papua New Guinea. At the moment most countries use the FPTP system, including ourselves, as it generally produces a clear result and a strong government. It works on the simple principle of one person, one vote, counted once.
20th March 2011
Plans to develop a new €50 million museum displaying the history of the EU have been denounced by South West MEP Ashley Fox. The “House of European History” was conceived by the former European Parliament President Hans-Gert Pöttering in 2007, and is proposed to be built in the European Parliament.
15th March 2011
France's Europe Minister has today confirmed that it will take an amendment to reduce the number of European Parliament sittings in Strasbourg, proposed by Conservative MEP Ashley Fox, to the European Court of Justice.
9th March 2011
Proposals put forward by Conservative MEP Ashley Fox to cut down on the number of trips between Brussels and Strasbourg have been adopted today in a vote that will save EU taxpayers 15 Million Euros and save the environment from 1600 tonnes of needless carbon dioxide.
15th February 2011
Conservative MEP for the South West Ashley Fox has come to the defence of a local Cornwall micro-brewery that is facing a backdated tax bill of £10,000 because of EU rules stating that nettle beer is not in fact beer.
11th February 2011
Latest European Parliament research suggests that 70% of MEPs want to drop Strasbourg. Moving to one seat instead of the current Travelling circus would save UK taxpayers £28 million a year.
28th January 2011
Conservative MEP for Gibraltar, Ashley Fox MEP, has formally asked the European Commission to look at the pollution levels coming from the CEPSA refinery across the bay from Gibraltar. This follows news that the refinery has doubled its output over the last 12 months.
21st January 2011
Concern in rural areas at 50% price hike
We all know the cost of fuel is going up, we see it at the petrol pump every week; as petrol prices rise so to does the cost of driving. Yet for many residents across the South West these increases in the cost of fuel are having a far more concerning effect. Between November and December this year the cost of home heating oil rose by 50%.