[geo-discuss] INSPIRE vote in committee today: update

Rufus Pollock rufus.pollock at okfn.org
Tue Mar 21 11:53:56 UTC 2006

By complete chance I've been in Brussels yesterday and today speaking at 
the TACD conference (http://drn.okfn.org/node/100) which has given me a 
chance to to some last minute lobbying on the INSPIRE directive.

Here's the feedback so far:

1. The meaning of the two groups of amendments on the ENVI meeting page


The first set are the Rapporteurs' set (i.e. the set she is putting 
forward as her package). These are amendments 1-36. This is *good* news 
since all of our core amendments are in there (and are the right way).

The second set are other peoples. there are 2 amendments in there we *do 
not* want (37 and 41 -- 41 especially). Good news: 41 has been thrown 
out as being invalid and 37 is (-) on most people's lists.

2. Not a lot of MEPs we talked to remembered getting the open letter 
(they were all sure that it had come through but they had been 'very 
busy' last week). This suggests that in future we really need to mail 
*and* follow up (by phone, email etc etc)

Therefore yesterday afternoon and this morning Benjamin and I have been 
busy hand-delivering copies to everyone we could. We have also managed 
to speak to the following (or their assistants):

Satu Hassi (Green, Shadow Rapporteur)
Ms Broepels (EFF, Rapporteur)
Sornosa Martinez (PSE, Shadow Rapporteur?)
Ries (ALDE)

All UK MEPs:

Chris Davies (ALDE/Lib Dem)
Caroline Jackson (EPP/Con) (leading Cons on this issue)
John Bowis (EPP/Con)
Martin Callanan (EPP/Con)
Mary Honeyball (PSE/Labour) (leading Lab on this issue)
Linda McAvan (PSE/Labour)

We now know the Green, EPP, ALDE and PSE line and they all seem pretty 
good for us (I'll give more detail after the vote). We also know the UK 
MEPs line which interestingly seems to be different --  most UK MEPs are 
under pressure to not follow their group line but to follow the UK govt 
line (i.e. the common position)

3. The feedback from MEPs in the UK is that the only people they've been 
lobbied until now when we knocked on their door was the OS/DEFRA (how 
the OS comes to set the UK govt line i just don't know ...). For example 
one assistance actually said: "Oh we're really glad you've come along 
because until now we haven't really heard the other side of this".

What this suggests to me is:

a) we need to change this by making sure we continue to communicate with 

b) We should try and change the UK govt line on this, i.e. we want to 
target DEFRA. They probably haven't heard from anyone from OS until now 
and I think we could make a lot of progress if we were able to find 
someone to talk to.

4. The vote on INSPIRE will be at 1700 Brussels time. Benjamin and I 
should be there and will try and post asap after the vote.



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