Daily Archives: June 7, 2013

Jim Pickard

By Jim Pickard and Elizabeth Rigby

John Mills, the Labour donor whose “tax-efficient” gift threatened to overshadow the party’s relaunch, has had brushes with the authorities in the past for trading offences.

The offences involved the sale of brass trinkets as gold-plated jewellery and a “Lucky Panda” toy whose eyes and ears fell off.

Mr Mills was sacked in 1986 as deputy chairman of the London Docklands Development Corporation for failing to disclose these misdemeanours.

The tycoon, who made his fortune through JML, the shopping company channel, is the brother of David Mills, the husband of Tessa Jowell, the former Labour cabinet minister.

On Thursday, it emerged that he had given a £1.65m donation to Labour in shares because Read more >>

Jim Pickard

As the battle for a share of the spending round spoils escalates, other departments are pressing ahead with attempts to seize a slice of the protected health budget.

The FT understands that Eric Pickles, local government secretary, is seeking to redefine some housing programmes as health spending. (Just as Philip Hammond and others have sought to squeeze under the “electrified” ringfence.)

These are the Decent Homes fund, which is focused on improving the condition of homes for social housing tenants and vulnerable households in the private sector in England, and the Disabled Facilities Grant which pays for changes to housing to meet the needs of disabled people.

He is also seeking a greater contribution from the health and education departments to Read more >>