Following on from this week’s reference to the Supreme Court to determine whether the Welsh Assembly has the authority to pass the Local Government Byelaws (Wales) Bill 2012, the Attorney General has been asked to decide if another piece of legislation before the Welsh government is ultra vires. The Official Languages (Wales) Bill is designed to give equal status to English and Welsh in the country, but it has been argued that the assembly only has the competency to legislate on matters concerning the Welsh language, not English. The Assembly contends that any references to English in the Bill are only incidental. The Attorney General has until the end of October to decide whether to refer this new matter to the Supreme Court.
In other Attorney General news Dominic Grieve QC was returning to the hotel he was staying in in Birmingham after appearing at the Conservative party conference earlier this week when he was confronted by youths demanding to know what he was doing in the area. He announced:

“I am the Attorney General of England and Wales!”

At which point his assailants fled, according to The Telegraph.

Justice minister Damian Green unveiled trial virtual court schemes, which include regional virtual courts that would enable preliminary magistrates’ hearings to take place over videolink. Prison-to-prison videolinks will be extended to new areas, and magistrates’ court opening hours will be extended.

The Upper Tier Tribunal threw out an appeal bid to challenge HMRC’s VAT policy on hot food brought by a branch of sandwich chain Subway. The dispute centred on whether Subway’s takeaway sandwiches were above ambient temperature when consumed. It was held that although the toasted sandwiches’ temperature at the point of consumption depends on how quickly they are eaten after being bought as a takeaway, it was clear the sandwiches were heated for the purpose of enabling them to be consumed at above ambient temperature.

A woman has admitted dangerous driving after Manchester Crown Court ruled that it was “entirely foreseeable” that her Ugg boots could become snagged on the car pedals, which was how the accident had happened. Motoring groups have urged motorists to not drive in footwear that could cause accidents, including high heels, flip-flops, Wellington boots or clogs.