Session 2015-16
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1

 

House of Commons

 
 

Notices of Amendments

 

given up to and including

 

Friday 5 February 2016

 

New Amendments handed in are marked thus Parliamentary Star

 

Parliamentary Star - whiteAmendments which will comply with the required notice period at their next appearance

 

Public Bill Committee


 

Enterprise Bill [Lords]


 

Note

 

This document includes all amendments tabled to date and includes any

 

withdrawn amendments at the end. The amendments have been arranged in

 

accordance with the Order to be proposed by Anna Soubry.

 

 


 

Anna Soubry

 

That the Bill be considered in the following order, namely, Clause 1, Schedule 1,

 

Clauses 2 to 14, Schedule 2, Clauses 15 to 19, Schedule 3, Clauses 20 to 35, Schedule 4,

 

new Clauses, new Schedules, Clauses 36 to 40, and remaining proceedings on the Bill.

 


 

Anna Soubry

 

That, subject to the discretion of the Chair, any written evidence received by the

 

Committee shall be reported to the House for publication.

 



 
 

Notices of Amendments: 5 February 2016                  

2

 

Enterprise Bill-[Lords], continued

 
 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

33

 

Clause  1,  page  1,  line  5,  at end insert—

 

“(1A)    

Her Majesty may by Letters Patent from time to time appoint a person to be the

 

Commissioner.

 

(1B)    

A person appointed to be the Commissioner shall hold office until the end of the

 

period for which he is appointed.

 

(1C)    

A person appointed to be the Commissioner may be—

 

(a)    

relieved of office by Her Majesty at his own request, or

 

(b)    

removed from office by Her Majesty on the ground of gross misconduct.

 

(1D)    

Her Majesty may declare the office of Commissioner to have been vacated if

 

satisfied that the person appointed to be the Commissioner is incapable for

 

medical reasons—

 

(a)    

of performing the duties of his office; and

 

(b)    

of requesting to be relieved of it.

 

(1E)    

A person appointed to be the Commissioner is not eligible for re-appointment.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would provide a level of independence for the Small Business Commissioner,

 

adapted from the arrangements for the appointment of the Information Commissioner and the

 

Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration who are appointed by the Crown following

 

advice from both Houses of Parliament.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

37

 

Clause  1,  page  1,  line  9,  leave out paragraph (b) and insert—

 

“(b)    

to consider complaints from small businesses relating to matters in

 

connection with the supply of goods and services to—

 

(i)    

larger businesses and

 

(ii)    

public authorities

 

    

and to make recommendations.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would widen the consideration of complaints function to cover complaints from

 

small businesses relating to matters in connection with the supply of goods and services to larger

 

businesses and to public authorities (as defined in clause 13).

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

Hannah Bardell

 

38

 

Clause  1,  page  1,  line  11,  at end insert—

 

“(c)    

to consider complaints from small businesses relating to their access to

 

finance, and, where the Commissioner considers it appropriate, to make

 

recommendations to the Secretary of State about measures that should be

 

taken to improve small businesses’ access to finance.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would extend the remit of the Commissioner to receive complaints about the

 

access of small businesses to finance, and would enable the Commissioner to make

 

recommendations to the Secretary of State about measures to improve small businesses’ access to

 

finance.


 
 

Notices of Amendments: 5 February 2016                  

3

 

Enterprise Bill-[Lords], continued

 
 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

39

 

Clause  1,  page  1,  line  11,  at end insert—

 

“(2A)    

The complaints at subsection 2(b) include complaints from

 

(a)    

small businesses relating to cash retentions and

 

(b)    

construction firms regarding cash retention by companies.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would make it clear that the Small Business Commissioner’s remit included

 

complaints from small businesses about cash retentions and from construction firms about cash

 

retention by other companies.

 


 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

34

 

Schedule  1,  page  56,  line  7,  leave out paragraph 2

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment in conjunction with amendment 33 would establish the Small Business

 

Commissioner as an appointment by the Crown.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

35

 

Schedule  1,  page  56,  line  19,  leave out sub-paragraph (d)

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment in conjunction with amendment 33 would establish the Small Business

 

Commissioner as an appointment by the Crown.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

36

 

Schedule  1,  page  56,  line  21,  leave out sub-paragraph (e)

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would remove the Secretary of State’s powers to dismiss the Small Business

 

Commissioner.

 


 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

40

 

Clause  3,  page  3,  line  10,  at end insert—

 

“(d)    

tax rates, allowances and thresholds of relevance to small business

 

owners.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would extend the general information and advice that may be published by the

 

Commissioner to include tax rates, allowances and thresholds of relevance to small businesses.


 
 

Notices of Amendments: 5 February 2016                  

4

 

Enterprise Bill-[Lords], continued

 
 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

41

 

Clause  3,  page  3,  line  10,  at end insert—

 

“(e)    

guidance on payday loan rates and their appropriateness.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would extend the general information and advice that may be published by the

 

Commissioner to include information about payday loans.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

Hannah Bardell

 

42

 

Clause  3,  page  3,  line  29,  at end insert—

 

“(5A)    

The Commissioner may assist small businesses by taking an active and direct role

 

in resolving, mediating or facilitating the resolution of disputes.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would give the Small Business Commissioner the power to take an active role in

 

resolving, mediating or facilitating the resolution of disputes.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

43

 

Clause  3,  page  3,  line  29,  at end insert—

 

“(5B)    

The Commissioner must publish, or give to small businesses, general advice or

 

information about the relationship between the Small Business Commissioner’s

 

complaints scheme and any other legal remedy available to a complainant.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would require the Small Business Commissioner to give general advice or

 

information to small businesses about the relationship between the Small Business Commissioner

 

complaints scheme and any other legal remedies available.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

44

 

Clause  3,  page  3,  line  43,  at end insert—

 

“(9A)    

Where a recommendation is made under subsection (8), the Commissioner may

 

take the relevant action in response to the recommendations where she sees fit.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would give the Small Business Commissioner the power to act directly on

 

recommendations he has made.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

45

 

Clause  3,  page  4,  line  9,  leave out paragraph (c) 

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would include public authorities in the definition of “larger business”, and

 

therefore extend the Small Business Commissioner’s remit to include consideration of complaints

 

by small businesses relating to public authorities.

 



 
 

Notices of Amendments: 5 February 2016                  

5

 

Enterprise Bill-[Lords], continued

 
 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

Hannah Bardell

 

47

 

Clause  4,  page  4,  line  25,  at end insert―

 

    

“or is made by a small business (“the complainant”) which has an agreement to

 

supply, or has supplied or may supply, goods or services to another small or

 

medium sized business (“the respondent”), which has the same meaning given by

 

section 7(1) in the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would extend the Small Business Commissioner‘s remit to complaints made by an

 

SME against another, to which it is providing goods or services.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

48

 

Clause  4,  page  4,  line  26,  after “(4))” insert “or relates to allegations of unfair

 

treatment or unfair contracts”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would empower the Small Business Commissioner to investigate allegations of

 

unfair treatment or unfair contracts.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

46

 

Clause  4,  page  4,  line  27,  at end insert—

 

“(3A)    

A relevant complaint may be made anonymously.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would enable the Commissioner to act on anonymous complaints from small

 

businesses against a larger business.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

49

 

Clause  4,  page  4,  line  27,  at end insert—

 

“(3A)    

A “relevant complaint” at subsection (3) may be made anonymously by a small

 

business (“the complainant”) which has an agreement to supply, or has supplied

 

or may supply, goods or services to a larger business”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would allow the Small Business Commissioner to be able to act on anonymous

 

complaints.

 



 
 

Notices of Amendments: 5 February 2016                  

6

 

Enterprise Bill-[Lords], continued

 
 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

50

 

Clause  5,  page  5,  line  35,  at end insert—

 

“(3A)    

Where the respondent fails to provide information voluntarily the Commissioner

 

may investigate the failure and can enforce compliance with information requests

 

on contract terms.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would allow the Small Business Commissioner to investigate and require

 

compliance with information requests on contract terms.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

Hannah Bardell

 

51

 

Clause  5,  page  5,  line  37,  at end insert—

 

“(4A)    

In enquiring into, considering and determining a complaint, the Commissioner

 

must take all reasonable steps not to identify the complainant, unless the

 

complainant consents.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would provide anonymity to complainants who raise a complaint with the

 

Commissioner.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

52

 

Clause  5,  page  5,  line  37,  at end insert—

 

“(4A)    

In support of the consideration and determination of a complaint made under the

 

Small Business Commissioner complaints scheme, the following bodies may be

 

required to provide information or answer questions during the course of the

 

Commissioner’s investigations—

 

(a)    

Government departments,

 

(b)    

local authorities,

 

(c)    

public sector bodies, and

 

(d)    

companies.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would require Government, local authorities and public sector bodies and

 

companies to provide information or to answer questions when a complaint is made.

 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

53

 

Clause  5,  page  5,  line  44,  at end insert—

 

“(6A)    

A recommendation made under subsection (6) may be that the complainant and

 

respondent enter mediation to resolve their dispute.

 

(6B)    

Where a party declines mediation the relevant party shall provide an outline to the

 

Commissioner on costs relating to litigation.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would allow the Small Business Commissioner to recommend that the parties

 

attend mediation and to make a commentary on costs in litigation where a party declines

 

mediation.


 
 

Notices of Amendments: 5 February 2016                  

7

 

Enterprise Bill-[Lords], continued

 
 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

54

 

Clause  5,  page  6,  line  10,  at end insert—

 

“(12)    

On application by the Commissioner a court may declare an unfair contract term

 

void.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would empower the courts on application from the Small Business Commissioner

 

to declare void a contract term that is unfair.

 


 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

55

 

Clause  6,  page  6,  line  12,  leave out “may” and insert “must”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would require the Commissioner to publish a report of the enquiry into,

 

consideration and determination of a complaint made under the SBC complaints scheme.

 


 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

56

 

Clause  7,  page  7,  line  24,  leave out paragraph (vii)

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would remove from regulations the power to dismiss a complaint which the

 

Commissioner considers has previously been considered under the complaints scheme or by

 

another complaints-handling body, ombudsman or regulator.

 


 

Bill Esterson

 

Kevin Brennan

 

57

 

Clause  8,  page  8,  line  32,  at end insert—

 

“(3)    

The Commissioner must ensure that all information provided by complainants,

 

litigants and other parties against respondents is handled with confidentiality.

 

(4)    

The Commissioner must not release the information outlined in subsection (3)

 

without the consent of the complainant, litigant or relevant party.”

 

Member’s explanatory statement

 

This amendment would provide protections for those either providing information to the Small

 

Business Commissioner or from complainants or litigants with large businesses.

 



 
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Revised 05 February 2016