Next week will see two more meetings in Parliament on HS2. It had been thought that the 4th of February had seen the end of hearings for the HS2 Hybrid Bill Select Committee, and that they would agree their report together with a short wrap-up public session on 22 February. However, they have decided that on that day they want to hear from the Department for Transport.
It’s not known why they have decided they want this final evidence session, or whether it will affect the timing for the publication of their report, which was expected to be published that day, or as soon as possible thereafter. All that we know is that they will be hearing from the Counsel for the Secretary of State for Transport in open session at 5pm.
The next day, the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee will hold the one session of their follow-up inquiry to the PHSO report which found HS2 Ltd guilty of maladministration. Starting at 9.40, they will hear from Deborah Fazan, the HS2 Residents’ Commissioner. Immediately afterwards, they will question Robert Goodwill MP, Minister of State, Department for Transport, Simon Kirby, HS2 Ltd CEO and Oliver Bayne, HS2 Director of Land and Property.
This COULD be revealing, but no doubt they will have their excuses ready. The fact that their honesty is in doubt should be enough reason to end this project!