UNCORRECTED TRANSCRIPT OF ORAL EVIDENCE To be published as HC 1158-i taken before the ENVIRONMENT, FOOD AND RURAL AFFAIRS COMMITTEE
DEFRA's Departmental Report 2008
Wednesday 29 October 2008
Chairman: You have activated Mr Tipping's critical faculties!
Q84 Paddy Tipping: Can I switch the focus? You mentioned cost-sharing a few minutes ago. My recollection was that a high priority for you was to have a bill on cost-sharing. What has happened to that?
Dame Helen Ghosh: No, we have never intended to have a cost-sharing bill in this session. We had one consultation on the cost-sharing proposals and the idea of the creation of a joint body to bring that to life. We are currently looking at the policy and talking to stakeholders and will come forward with a more detailed proposition for consultation, and then we would move to a draft bill. So a draft bill would not happen until - I am getting my sessions muddled up. It would be, I think, the next session, not the one that is about to start but 2009-10 and then subject to discussions on that a full bill thereafter. So setting up the body is something on which we have had preliminary consultation, we will have some more, and then we will move to a draft bill.
Q85 Paddy Tipping: Are people like the NFU involved in these discussions, because again I just have a recollection that they have taken their bat home because they do not think you have played fair with them on bovine TB?
Dame Helen Ghosh: They did take their bat away and I can say that negotiations to - I do not know what is the reverse of taking your bat away - bring their bat back -
Q86 Chairman: Bringing them back onto the field of play!
Dame Helen Ghosh: Bringing them back onto the field of play - are at a late stage, so we are very hopeful they will be bringing their bat back shortly.
Mr Stow: Indeed, I chaired a meeting at a seminar this morning with the NFU on better regulation, so I do not think they have really taken their bat away.
Dame Helen Ghosh: No, they are still playing with us on an awful lot of other fields, actually, yes.