Explanatory Notes

Lords Amendments to Clause 3: Incorporation of direct EU legislation

Lords Amendment 3*

22 Lords Amendment 3 would require the UK Government to take steps to ensure that environmental protection and improvement is not reduced as a result of leaving the EU. In particular, it would require the UK Government to publish within six months of this Act being passed:

a. proposals for primary legislation establishing a duty on public authorities to apply environmental principles after exit day;

b. proposals for the establishment before exit day of an independent body to ensure compliance with environmental law; and

c. a list of statutory functions that can be exercised so as to achieve the objective in subsection (1) (not reducing environmental protection) and a list of functions currently exercised by EU bodies that must be retained or replicated in UK law in order to ensure that environmental protection is not reduced as a result of EU exit.

Lords Amendment 4*

23 Lords Amendment 4 would limit how delegated powers (including those contained within this Bill) can amend, repeal or revoke retained EU law relating to (a) employment entitlements, rights and protection, (b) equality entitlements, rights and protection, (c) health and safety entitlements, rights and protection, (d) consumer standards, or (e) environmental standards and protection. As these terms are not defined, this amendment could potentially apply to a very broad range of legislation.

24 The amendment would require the Government to design an enhanced scrutiny procedure process which any regulations that amend, repeal or revoke this category of legislation would be subject to. This would include requirements for a draft of the regulation to be laid before Parliament and be approved by resolution of both Houses, and include a period of consultation with relevant stakeholders.

25 The enhanced scrutiny procedure would also require a Minister of the Crown to produce an explanatory statement under paragraph 22 of Schedule 7 and include a declaration that the regulation does no more than make technical changes to retained EU law in order for it to work following exit.

26 The amendment is unclear as to what would qualify as "technical changes to retained EU law in order for it to work following exit", and so where the Government believed it could be argued that the changes are not "technical", those changes might instead have to be made through primary legislation.


Prepared 22nd May 2018