Government Minister- George Osborne MP

Chancellor of the Exchequer and First Secretary of State.

Born and Educated in London and studied History at Oxford University.

Elected Conservative MP for Tatton, Cheshire in June 2001.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer is the governments chief financial minister, responsible for raising revenue through taxation or borrowing and controlling public spending. He has overall responsibility for the work of the treasury.

Responsibilities cover Fiscal Policy (Including presenting of the annual budget) monetary policy, setting inflation targets and ministerial arrangements (in his role as second lord of the treasury).

Worked as Political Secretary to the Leader of the Opposition before being elected to Parliament. Entered Parliament as the youngest Conservative MP in the House of Commons.

Served on the Public Accounts Committee and held a number of shadow ministerial posts, being appointed Shadow Chancellor in 2005 aged 33.

Successfully ran David Cameron’s campaign to become leader of the Conservative Party in 2005, was part of the small Conservative negotiating team that led to the formation of the coalition government in 2010 which then saw him appointed as Chancellor of the Exchequer in May 2010.

George Osborne - budget

Official Secrets Act- Reflection

The lesson about the official secrets act left very much the impression that, as journalists, we need to be very aware of the act which was most recently updated in 1989, but the likelihood of us actually coming across it in our work is very low.

One thing that was very effectively communicated to us about it was that we should pay particular reference to the story about The Guardian when the police tried to use the act to try and get them to reveal sources they had regarding the News of the World phone hacking scandal which The Guardian refuted and ended up winning a big legal battle.

We also learnt that Civil Servants work for particular governmental departments and are employed regardless of who the government minister is of that department, they are not supposed to speak to the press but they are a good source of whistleblower stories.

We found out that there are 22 government ministers in the cabinet and, until the recent reshuffle, it was very much a closed shop of nearly all white men of a particular age range and background, this is now slightly more balanced out since the general election in May.

What I have taken from this lesson is that the official secrets act does have a definite affect on journalism but it does work both ways for us because it does certainly stop us gaining certain information or affect how we do our job, but it does also protect us certainly when it comes to keeping our sources secret.

Reflection- Martin Bell

The session about Martin Bell was an acute lesson in how to deliver war reports and then how to completely change direction in life because of what you have seen.

He started his career with the BBC in 1962 before being called to London in 1965 shortly before his first foreign trip for them to Ghana.

Learning about his career it has become very apparent that he covered many wars and conflicts, 11 in total, and has reported from 80 different countries.

In his reports from Bosnia he has a sense of urgency in his voice and he isn’t afraid of reporting from the side of troops and the side of civilians as well.

There are times he does a piece to camera with either troops and guns or with civilians around him which I find truly extraordinary.

It is well documented he then used his Bosnian experiences to great effect as he announced his candidacy and then overturned a huge Tory majority in the seat of Tatton in the 1997 General Election.

His success in the election made him a symbol of the fight against sleaze in the Conservative government after he had been a symbol of war reporting.

His reflection on his time as a war correspondent to a packed out audience at The Frontline Club is very insightful.

Dean Kirk and Hull Red Labour- Council story

Former Labour party Councillor Dean Kirk says his new Hull Red Labour party will be vocal in the council chamber, through their only representative Gill Kennett, and in the local area.

Mr Kirk, formerly the councillor for Derringham ward for the ruling Labour party, stood in Myton Ward this time, a ward where he has been a resident for 20 years.

He said he and Ms Kennett set up the party due to their opposition to austerity cuts being forced on Hull City Council by the Conservative led government last year, opposition which led to them being suspended.

He confirmed that Coun Shaun Moody and Coun Dermot Rathbone and Jan Hornby are all defecting from the Labour party to join Hull Red Labour saying they have five candidates now and will have a sixth in time for the local elections in May 2016.

Their main objective is to fight against austerity and to provide a voice of opposition moving forward.

Mr Kirk said: “We think the Labour run council has just rolled over and accepted the Tory governments cuts without a fight.

“We will be the REAL Labour party.”

Saying the last election was about building a platform he said he was quite pleased with the amount of votes they received, although he did say some people had been in touch since to say they voted for the wrong Labour party by mistake which cost them hundreds of votes.

Mr Kirk also said: “I believe councils shouldn’t sit on pots of money for a rainy day.

“The Labour run Hull City Council has a reserve of £11M that they’re not doing anything with, that money needs spending on services and jobs, not just left in the background waiting for a rainy day.”

Mr Kirk, who is still a governor at Rise Academy and Pearson Primary school, says he will continue to support homeless people in the area and make people aware of Hull Red Labour.

He also said there will be leaflets being posted through letter boxes in the coming weeks and months as they gear up for the next election.

Protestors Vent Anger at Council and Government

Protestors from Unite, GMB and both East Yorkshire and Hull against Flouridisation have been protesting on the steps of the guildhall today while a budget meeting was taking place inside.

Patrick Holdsworth of East Yorkshire against Flouride said: “It’s a massive waste of money,

“It will cost £400,000 to set up and then £100,000 a year to maintain,

He continued “They’re targeting 5 to 7 year olds saying that it strengthens tooth enamel but there is no proof of the benefits they say it brings,”

He wants them to take the money it costs and use it to educate both children and adults about dental health instead.

Unite Convenor Pete Schofield said they, and the GMB, were campaigning against austerity cuts that have been forced on the council by a £150M cut in funding from central government.

“We’re protesting because it’s about time the Labour council grew a backbone and made a stand against the Tory government,

“Over the last five years there’s been 2,000 jobs lost and the council have had to start charging for things that were free before like day services, transport and meals at day centres,

He continued “The government have targeted Labour councils and looked after their own like Chelsea council has had a rise in funding while Hull has had a massive cut,

He also went on to say it wasn’t specifically aimed at the government but also the council saying “The chief executive shouldn’t get paid £170,000 it’s far too much,

“Two councilors Jill Kennet and Dean Kirk have actually now set up their own party for the people of Hull,

“It’s about time the council said no to anymore cuts,”

The council now charge £65 a session for day services, £5 each way for transport and about £2.50 for a meal at a day centre as a result of the cutbacks.