Press release

Press briefing afternoon 12 July 2012

This news article was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

House of Lords reform, Heathrow expansion, Olympics security, issues with the M4 motorway and economic growth were discussed.

Lords reform

Asked whether the second week of business in September had been decided, and whether the Lords reform would return then, the PMS said that the Government had not set a date.

Asked whether the PM would like it to return in September, the PMS said that the Government had said it would return in autumn and until then the Government would continue to discuss the issue to build consensus.

Asked whether the Bill coming back in the second week of September had been ruled out, the PMS said that it had not been ruled in or out.

Heathrow

Asked whether Heathrow would probably be expanded, the PMS said that the Government had set out its policy for this parliament. There would be a call for evidence and the Government would listen to views.

G4S

Asked whether G4S should have any Government contracts, the PMS said that there were strict rules that applied to Government contracts and procurements.

Asked which minister has the locus over the relationship between G4S and LOCOG, the PMS said that ultimately security for the Olympic Games was the responsibility of the Home Office.

Asked whether the Government would give Olympic tickets to the members of the armed forces being drafted in to resolve the G4S issue, the PMS said that the Home Secretary had already said something to that effect in her statement earlier.

M4

Asked for an update on the closure of the M4, the PMS said that the Highways Agency was working hard to resolve the issue. The contractors were working around the clock and would re-open the motorway as soon as it was safe to do so. The Highways Agency expected the road to be open in the next few days.

Asked to clarify how many days it would be, the PMS said that the important thing was that they did the job properly and opened the road when it was safe. We were looking at various contingency plans to ensure that athletes and the people involved in the Olympic Games could travel easily.

Asked whether contingencies included using a single lane on the M4 exclusively for the Olympics family, and taking over the Heathrow Express, the PMS said that there were a number of alternatives.

Asked what the PM was doing about the M4 issue and whether he was being kept updated on the issue, the PMS said that the PM was receiving regular updates. The Transport Secretary had been to the site to check that everything that could be done was being done.

Growth

Asked whether the PM was upset by criticism by John Cridland that the Government was doing nothing to help growth, the PMS said that the Government was taking action. There were 800,000 more private sector jobs, inflation was down, unemployment was down and interest rates were at a record low. We were now a net exporter of cars for the first time since the 1970s and we had just completed the biggest construction project in Europe, which was the Olympic project and we had started the next biggest project, Crossrail. We were focusing on growth and this was something the PM addressed at cabinet meetings on a regular basis so that he could check on implementation.