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Session 2006-07
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Wednesday 16th May 2007

Public Bill Committee


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      Other Amendments not tabled within the required notice period are marked thus #

Sustainable Communities Bill


       Clause 3

       Amendment (32) proposed in page 3, line 11, leave out ‘on a plan under section 2(3)(b)’ and insert ‘under section 2(5)’.—(Mr Nick Hurd).

       Question proposed, That the Amendment be made.

Mr Nick Hurd
Mr David Drew
Julia Goldsworthy

33

Clause 3, page 3, line 21, leave out ‘of residents under 25 years old.’ and insert ‘through panels set up in accordance with subsection (1A) of residents, employers and employees in the council’s area and in particular of—

          (i) young people in the area;

          (ii) persons from ethnic minorities;

          (iii) tenants in social housing;

          (iv) persons living on lower incomes;

          (v) persons with disabilities;

          (vi) persons living in deprived areas; and

          (vii) persons over 60 years of age.

      An area is deprived for the purposes of sub-paragraph (vii) if the official male adult unemployment rate exceeds 10 per cent., or if more than 20 per cent. of households have net incomes below £15,000 per year.

      (1A) For the purposes of this Act, a principal council shall, so far as is practicable, arrange for one or more panels to be established in its area representing persons who live in its area or who work or employ workers in its area and any such panel shall, so far as is practicable include—

        (a) representatives of the categories of persons specified in subsection (1)(d)(i) to (viii), and

        (b) representatives of such persons or bodies as the council considers appropriate being persons or bodies of any nature who exercise functions or are engaged in activities in relation to the sustainability of local communities in the council’s area; and

        (c) an equal number of male and female members.

      For the purposes of this subsection a member of a panel may represent more than one of the categories specified in subsection (1)(d).’.

Mr Nick Hurd
Mr David Drew
Julia Goldsworthy

34

Clause 3, page 3, line 25, leave out from ‘council’ to end of line 42 and insert—

      ‘(3) A principal council shall cooperate with any panel set up in its area under subsection (1A) in making recommendations under section 2(5).’.

Mr Phil Woolas

16

Page 3, line 10, leave out Clause 3.


Mr Phil Woolas

26

Page 4, line 18, leave out Clause 5.


Mr Phil Woolas

27

Page 4, line 41, leave out Clause 6.


Mr Phil Woolas

28

Page 5, line 10, leave out Clause 7.


Mr Phil Woolas

29

Page 5, line 25, leave out Clause 8.


Mr Phil Woolas

35

Schedule, page 8, line 3, leave out ‘indicators referred to in section 2’ and insert ‘matters referred to in section [Proposals by principal councils]’.

Mr David Drew

21

Schedule, page 8, line 30, after ‘Act,’, insert ‘including new arrangements for the provision of affordable housing,’.


NEW CLAUSES

Action plans

Mr Nick Hurd
Mr David Drew
Julia Goldsworthy

NC2

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) The Secretary of State shall, within six months of the passing of this Act, consult all principal councils in accordance with this section—

        (a) on the matters set out in the Schedule to this Act, which specifies matters which affect the sustainability of local communities, and

        (b) on any other matters which in the opinion of the Secretary of State affect the sustainability of local communities.

      Consultation under this subsection shall be by notice in writing (“a consultation notice”).

      (2) The Secretary of State may, if he thinks fit, require the consultation under subsection (1) to be carried out by the Local Government Association.

      (3) Arrangements made under subsection (2) may—

        (a) require the Local Government Association to comply with the requirements of this section relating to consultation by the Secretary of State, and

        (b) contain provisions not specified in this section provided they do not conflict with any requirement of this Act.

      (4) A district council or county borough council shall, within six weeks of the date it receives a consultation notice, send a copy of the notice to all parish or community councils in its area.

      (5) Subject to section 3, any principal council may, in response to a consultation notice make recommendations to the Secretary of State for measures which the council reasonably believes would promote the sustainability of local communities in its area.

      (6) Any recommendation under subsection (5) must be made by a council within a period of nine months of the date on which it received the consultation notice.

      (7) The Secretary of State must co-operate with the Local Government Association in drawing up an action plan to promote the sustainability of local communities which shall—

        (a) be based primarily on those recommendations that have been identified by the Association as having cross-party support; and

        (b) include such other recommendations made by principal councils as the Secretary of State thinks fit.

      (8) Before drawing up the action plan, the Secretary of State must—

        (a) consolidate the recommendations or arrange for the Local Government Association to consolidate them; and

        (b) obtain from the Local Government Association—

          (i) their views as to the order in which the recommendations should be implemented,

          (ii) a list of those recommendations which in the opinion of the Association should be given the greatest priority, and

          (iii) a separate list of those which received cross-party support in the Association.

      (9) Before drawing up the action plan, the Secretary of State shall consider the views of the Local Government Association and shall determine which recommendations are not appropriate to be implemented immediately or at all, on the grounds that—

        (a) the direct or indirect costs likely to be involved in their immediate implementation are excessive, or

        (b) their implementation in whole or in part is likely to conflict, to a significant extent, with a specific government objective.

      (10) The Secretary of State shall lay the action plan before each House of Parliament for approval by each House.

      (11) The Secretary of State shall have a duty to implement the action plan and for that purpose shall keep under review the progress made from time to time in the implementation of the action plan.

      (12) The Secretary of State shall ensure that every regional office of government cooperates with principal councils and panels established under section 3(1)(a) for the relevant region in the promotion of the sustainability of local communities.

      (13) The Secretary of State shall in each Session of Parliament beginning after the enactment of this act lay an annual report before each House of Parliament containing the action plan, if completed, and detailing the progress made to the date of the report in producing the action plan if not completed, and in implementing the recommendations contained in the action plan in pursuance of subsection (7).

      (14) The Secretary of State shall be taken not to have complied with subsection (10) unless the plan is approved by resolution of each House of Parliament.’.


Local spending reports: rights of principal councils and representatives of local persons

Mr Nick Hurd

NC3

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) After considering the information contained in a local spending report issued pursuant to section 4, a principal council may make recommendations to the Secretary of State as to—

        (a) whether that council could decide how any part of the money specified in that report may be spent; and

        (b) any consequential delegation of functions to the council.

      (2) Where a principal council proposes to make recommendations pursuant to subsection (1), it must—

        (a) refer the matter to any panels under section 3 for consideration; or

        (b) establish such panels if they do not exist and refer the matter to them for consideration.

      (3) A principal council and any panels acting pursuant to this section shall exercise their functions to promote the sustainability of local communities.

      (4) Within three months of receiving recommendations made by a principal council under subsection (1), the Secretary of State shall either adopt or reject each of the recommendations, and in either case shall give reasons for his decision.

      (5) At least once in each calendar year the Secretary of State shall publish a report providing details of all decisions taken pursuant to subsection (4) above.’.


Local spending reports

Mr Phil Woolas

NC1

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) For the purpose of assisting in promoting the sustainability of local communities, the Secretary of State may make arrangements for the production, by the Secretary of State or another person, of local spending reports.

      (2) A local spending report is a report on expenditure by such authorities, in such area, and over such period, as are determined in accordance with the arrangements.

      (3) The authorities may be—

        (a) a principal council;

        (b) a government department;

        (c) any other person exercising public functions.

      (4) The area may be—

        (a) one or more local authority areas;

        (b) one or more parts of a local authority area;

        (c) any combination of those.

      (5) The period may be or include a future period.

      (6) The expenditure to be included in relation to any authority, area or period is to be determined in accordance with the arrangements.

      (7) A report may relate to different areas or periods for different authorities.

      (8) The Secretary of State may make different arrangements for different reports.

      (10) For the purposes of subsection (9) any consultation undertaken before the commencement of that subsection is as effective as it would have been if undertaken after that commencement.’.

       As Amendments to Mr Phil Woolas’ proposed New Clause (Local spending reports) (NC1):—

Julia Goldsworthy
Mr Nick Hurd
Mr David Drew

(A)

Line 2, leave out ‘may’ and insert ‘shall’.

Julia Goldsworthy
Mr Nick Hurd
Mr David Drew

(B)

Line 7, leave out ‘may’ and insert ‘shall’.


Proposals by principal councils

Mr Phil Woolas

NC4

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) The Secretary of State must invite principal councils to make proposals which they consider would contribute to promoting the sustainability of local communities.

      (2) Before inviting proposals, the Secretary of State must—

        (a) appoint a person (who must be a person who the Secretary of State thinks represents the interests of principal councils) to consider the proposals and draw up a short-list of proposals to be considered by the Secretary of State;

        (b) make regulations about the procedure to be followed in relation to the proposals.

      (3) Before making regulations under subsection (2)(b) the Secretary of State must consult—

        (a) the person the Secretary of State proposes to appoint under subsection (2)(a), and

        (b) such other persons, who the Secretary of State thinks represent the interests of principal councils, as the Secretary of State thinks fit.

      (4) Regulations under subsection (2) may, in particular—

        (a) specify, or authorise the person appointed under subsection (2)(a) (the “selector”) to specify, steps to be taken by a principal council before making proposals (which may in particular include a requirement for a principal council to have regard to the matters specified in the Schedule);

        (b) specify steps to be taken by the selector in considering the proposals and drawing up a short-list;

        (c) specify criteria to be applied by the selector in drawing up a short-list;

        (d) specify a maximum number of proposals to be included in a short-list;

        (e) require the selector to prepare, and give to the Secretary of State, a report on the proposals;

        (f) specify the form of, and the information to be included in, a report under paragraph (e).

      (5) On receiving the short-list from the selector, the Secretary of State must—

        (a) decide what action, if any, to take in response to the proposals on the short-list, and

        (b) give reasons for the decision.

      (6) Regulations under subsection (2)—

        (a) must be made by statutory instrument, and

        (b) are subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.’.

ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [28TH FEBRUARY 2007]

       

       That, if proceedings on the Sustainable Communities Bill are not completed at this day’s sitting, the Committee do meet on Wednesday 14th March at Ten o’clock and Two o’clock, on Wednesday 21st March at Two o’clock, and thereafter on Wednesdays when the House is sitting at Ten o’clock.


ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [14TH MARCH 2007]

       

       The Committee at its rising this day do adjourn till Wednesday 28th March at Ten o’clock, and that it do meet thereafter—


        (a) on Wednesday 28th March; and

       (b) on on subsequent Wednesdays when the House is sitting at Ten o’clock.


ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [28TH MARCH 2007]

       

       That the Committee at its rising this day do adjourn till Wednesday 18th April at Ten o’clock, and that it do meet thereafter—

       (a) on Wednesday 18th April at Two o’clock; and

       (b) on subsequent Wednesdays when the House is sitting at Ten o’clock and Two o’clock.


ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [18TH APRIL 2007]

       

       That the Committee at its rising this day do adjourn till Wednesday 25th April at Ten o’clock, and that it do meet thereafter—


        (a) on Wednesday 25th April at Two o’clock; and

       (b) on Thursday 26th April at Ten o’clock and Two o’clock.


ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [25TH APRIL 2007]

       

       That the Committee at its rising this day do adjourn till Wednesday 2nd May at Ten o’clock, and that it do meet thereafter—


        (a) on Wednesday 2nd May at Two o’clock; and

       (b) on subsequent Wednesdays when the House is sitting at Ten o’clock and Two o’clock.


ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [25TH APRIL 2007]

       

       That remaining proceedings on the Bill be taken in the following order: Clause 1; Clause 4; Clauses 2 and 3; Clauses 5 to 13; the Schedule; new Clauses; new Schedules; remaining proceedings on the Bill.


ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [2ND MAY 2007]

       

       That remaining proceedings on the Bill be taken in the following order: Clauses 4 to 8; Clauses 2 and 3; Clauses 9 to 13; the Schedule; new Clauses; new Schedules; remaining proceedings on the Bill.


ORDER OF THE COMMITTEE [9TH MAY 2007]

       

       That remaining proceedings on the Bill be taken in the following order: Clauses 2 and 3; Clauses 5 to 13; the Schedule; new Clauses; new Schedules; remaining proceedings on the Bill.


 
 
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Prepared: 16 May 2007