The European Investment Bank (EIB) has today agreed a £1 billion loan for affordable housing, supporting the building of 20,000 homes, but has warned that leaving the EU could put its future investment in the UK at risk.
The EIB is a crucial source of low-cost financing in the UK, providing £5.6 billion of long-term investment for fifty projects across the country in 2015. It has warned that Brexit would be likely to significantly reduce future lending, pointing to non-EU members Switzerland and Norway who combined have received forty times less investment than the UK in recent years.
There is good news for smartphone users heading to the continent this bank holiday weekend. New EU rules will cap the cost of using your phone when abroad in Europe at 4p per minute, 2p per text and 4p per MB of data (excluding VAT), around four times cheaper than current limits.
Three UK's rate is dropping from 16.6p per minute, 5.2p per text and 17.4p per MB to 4.3p per minute, 1.5p per text and 4.3p per MB. Tesco Mobile has announced it will drop roaming charges altogether in more than 30 European countries between May and September this year. From July 2016, all phone companies will be required to scrap roaming fees for phone users travelling within the EU.
Ahead of the key vote on Monday on whether the UK should offer sanctuary to 3,000 child refugees, Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron has written to every MP calling on them to put party politics aside and 'stand up for humanity'.
The Government last week tried to buy off MPs with a proposal to take up to 3,000 additional people including children from Syria and North Africa over four years, but this will not help one of the thousands of children in Europe today.
"The sheer volume of serious and sobering evidence against turning our backs on Europe is overwhelming. The Treasury assessment today, showing a £4,300 cost to families, gives another stark warning about the impact on every household in Britain.
The Government has agreed a Liberal Democrat amendment to the Housing and Planning Bill, which protects vulnerable tenants from being wrongly evicted.
Under the Housing & Planning Bill, landlords get faster access to a property if they believe the tenant has abandoned it.
The successful amendment requires a landlord to get in touch with a third party such as a charity, local authority or individual who has helped to pay the tenant's deposit. If the landlord gets a response that the tenant has not abandoned the property they can't change the locks and reclaim it.
The politics of envy helps no-one, but trust in politics does.
I have no desire to poke around in the Prime Minister's private wealth, and definitely have no desire to force him to relive the pain of losing his father, having to confront that time all over again through the pages of national newspapers.
It is absolutely essential that British people have full confidence in our leaders, and that when decisions are made and Budgets are written there is not even a slightest hint of a conflict of interest or personal gain. But we are now in a position where people no longer have complete faith in this Government's decisions.
Commenting on Iain Duncan Smith's resignation, Tim Farron has called on George Osborne to follow his example.
Tim Farron said:
"It is quite right that Iain Duncan Smith has resigned over this heartless plan to cut disability benefits, but the true mastermind of the changes George Osborne, should also be considering his position.