Guardian on John Hayes moves from DECC
A new permanent secretary may have realised that the department was becoming dysfunctional, and those in the energy business said it was increasingly difficult to understand the direction of government policy, including on subsidies, prices and targets…
Relations between Davey and Hayes deteriorated so much at one point that Davey disclosed to the Guardian that he asked the prime minister to remove responsibility for green energy from Hayes.
He wrote to Cameron warning him that if Hayes continued in the role they would be open to legal challenge over any decision he made on the subject, since his views were so prejudiced.
Davey sought legal advice from his department, which confirmed that Hayes’s presence increased the danger of the department’s decisions on renewable energy being exposed to judicial review.
The formal warning was sent to the prime minister’s private secretary by Davey’s private secretary. Davey told the Guardian he feared even an unsuccessful legal challenge could be disruptive at a time when the government was trying to create certainty for energy investors. Davey had wanted to remove Hayes from all responsibility for renewables.
The prime minister rejected the warning and refused to remove Hayes from his post.
But of course he has now been moved.