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New MPs dominate CLG committee

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The bulk of members of the Communities and Local Government select committee are MPs who won their first election in May.

Membership of the committee was confirmed yesterday following an announcement last month that Sheffield MP Clive Betts (Lab) will stay on as chair. Harrow MP Bob Blackman (Con) is the only committe member to continue from last parliament.

Former housing minister Mark Prisk, who is the Conservative MP for Hertford and Stortford, joins this year, as does newly elected Scottish National Party MP Alison Thewliss (Glasgow Central).

Other new MPs joining the committee include Conservative MPs Kevin Hollinrake (Thirsk and Malton), Julian Knight (Solihull), David Mackintosh (Northampton South), and Mary Robinson (Cheadle).

All the Labour members of the committee are also new members of parliament. They are Jo Cox (Batley and Spen), Helen Hayes (Dulwich and West Norwood) and Angela Rayner (Ashton-under-Lyne).

The committee’s first inquiries of the parliament will be into the Cities and Local Government Devolution Bill, government proposals to extend the right-to-buy to housing associations and ‘lender option, borrower option’ loans.

The inquiry into so called ‘LOBOs’ was prompted by a Channel 4 Dispatches programme which aired earlier this month and claimed councils hadinvested in complex bank loans with difficult exit clauses worth £15 billion. It will begin on Monday with evidence from individuals involved in making the programme.

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