|Sustainable Communities Bill - continued||House of Commons|
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Proposals by principal councils
Mr Phil Woolas
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.’.
Mr Nick Hurd
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.’.
|© Parliamentary copyright 2007||Prepared: 23 May 2007|