Friday 4 March 2011

Powers and Holidays

Q.  When is a power not a power?
A.  When it’s just a one-off decision.
At first sight, the idea that the UK Government would give the Assembly the ‘power’ to make St David’s Day a Bank Holiday sounded encouraging.  I’m not sure which ‘field’ Bank Holidays comes under in the context of Parts 3 and 4 of GOWA, but I suspect that it’s outside all of them, and therefore giving the Assembly new rights.
Then I read the small print.
Actually, they’re only proposing to ‘consult’ with the Assembly over whether the Assembly might like to decide which option to take when the UK Government abolishes the May Day Bank Holiday.  The Assembly will most definitely not be given the power either to create another Bank Holiday, nor to keep May Day.
I suspect that the Minister making the suggestion genuinely thought that we’d all be delighted at the Assembly being consulted about whether it might like to take this decision.  It tends to underline how little they really understand.


Old_Miwl said...

I suppose it was only a matter of time before the Conservatives starting talking about abolishing May Day - they've never liked it.
As you say, this isn't about new powers it smacks of Welsh window dressing for a government that really doesn't get devolution (not that the previous one was any better in that regard).
There are pros and cons to making St David's Day a bank holiday, but I personally come down in favour - but as an extra one.

Welsh Agenda said...

I agree with Old Miwl, this is nothing but window dressing for a plan to abolish May Day.

Unlike several other public holidays which are simply randomly chose Mondays created simply to help the tourist industry's profits, May Day s actually a historic holiday, which actually means something.

The trouble is the Tories are ideaologically opposed to that 'something.' You wouldnt find them abolishing one of the religious holidays for example.