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19 August 2015This note provides an overview of the MPs' Pension Scheme and reforms introduced from May 2015. Further detail on the background can be found in SN 01844 MPs Pension Scheme - background
18 August 2015This note provides information on the pay to stay scheme in England under which social landlords can charge tenants with an income of over 60,000 market or near market rents. The Government intends to make higher rents compulsory in due course for social tenants earning over 40,000 in London and 30,000 elsewhere.
18 August 2015This is one of two briefing papers on rail passenger franchising. This note sets out the terms of the various rail franchises in England, Wales and Scotland. A second paper, SN6521, sets out in more detail how franchising works and the franchising policy of successive governments.
18 August 2015Since December 2014, when the Presidents of the US and Cuba announced the beginning of a rapprochement, there have been developments on both sides. The US has eased travel and commerce restrictions; in April the two leaders met in person and in May 2015 the US officially lifted its designation of Cuba as a state sponsor of terrorism. In July both countries opened embassies in the other country. But much remains to be done before relations can be considered 'normal' and it is far from clear how close the two countries will get. This note looks at what has happened so far and obstacles to be overcome.
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