Scotland Bill

AMENDMENT
TO BE MOVED
IN COMMITTEE
[Supplementary to the Revised Third Marshalled List]

Before Clause 10

THE EARL OF CAITHNESS

 

Insert the following new Clause—

“Referendums relating to the Union of the Kingdoms or the powers of the Scottish Parliament

(1) Notwithstanding section 29 or schedule 5 to the Scotland Act 1998, an Act of the Scottish Parliament which provides for any referendum which relates to the Union of the Kingdoms or to the powers of that Parliament is not law unless—

(a) the Electoral Commission has certified that any question (or questions) proposed to be asked in such a referendum is intelligible and expressed in terms which are not designed and are so far as is possible not likely to have the effect of making one choice more or less likely than any other to be chosen by voters, and

(b) the Electoral Commission has certified that the method by which the outcome of any referendum is it be determined following the casting of the votes is appropriate in all the circumstances.

(2) Any Act of the Scottish Parliament which includes any power to set the question or questions to be asked in any such referendum by subordinate instrument of whatever sort is not law unless it requires that the conditions in subsections (1)(a) and (b) are met before the subordinate instrument shall have effect.

(3) No Order in Council which alters the legislative competence of the Scottish Parliament so as to provide that an Act of the Scottish Parliament which provides for such a referendum is law shall have effect unless—

(a) if such an Order contains a proposed question (or questions) then the conditions in subsections (1)(a) and (b) are met; or

(b) if such an Order does not contain a proposed question (or questions) it provides that an Act of the Scottish Parliament is not law unless those conditions are met, or as the case may be, it requires that they are met before any subordinate instrument containing proposed questions is effective.

(4) The Electoral Commission may, and if it has reasonable grounds to believe that a referendum to which this section applies is likely it be held shall, undertake such research as it considers necessary to enable it properly to discharge the functions of certification conferred on it by this section.”

Prepared 9th March 2012