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Session 2006-07
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Tuesday 13th March 2007

Consideration of Bill


      New Amendments handed in are marked thus *

Statistics and Registration Service Bill, As Amended


Note

The Amendments have been arranged in accordance with the Statistics and Registration Bill (Programme) (No. 2) [13th March].


New Clauses

Access to the Prime Minister

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

NC1

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘The National Statistician shall have right of direct access to the Prime Minister on any matter involving the integrity of official statistics or a dispute with a government department regarding official statistics.’.


Functions and objectives of the Board

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

NC2

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) The functions and objectives of the Board shall include—

        (a) supervising the production and release of official statistics for the public good;

        (b) promoting and safeguarding good practice in relation to official statistics with the goal of ensuring that, wherever possible, such statistics are produced and released according to the highest standards of quality, integrity and impartiality and are free from political interference;

        (c) promoting the comprehensiveness of official statistics;

        (d) monitoring the activities of the National Statistician; and

        (e) monitoring and assessing compliance with the Code of Practice referred to in section 10 by the authorities falling under the provisions of section 6(1)(a).

      (2) The Board shall not be directly involved in production of statistics.’.


Role and objectives of the National Statistician

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

NC3

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) The role and objectives of the National Statistician shall include—

        (a) producing statistics;

        (b) co-ordinating statistical planning and production across government departments; and

        (c) promoting consistency in the production of statistics across the United Kingdom.

      (2) The National Statistician shall be the Government’s chief advisor on statistics, including on matters relating to the planning, production and quality of official statistics.

      (3) The National Statistician shall provide professional leadership to all persons within government who are engaged in statistical production or release.’.


Legal obligation to obey the code of practice

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

NC4

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘The Board, the National Statistician, government departments, the Scottish Administration, Welsh Ministerial authorities, Northern Ireland departments and any other person acting on behalf of the Crown in the production or publication of official statistics shall—

        (a) comply with the Code of Practice for Official Statistics; and

        (b) consult the Board on matters of interpretation of the Code where appropriate.’.


Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

40

Page 14, line 40 [Clause 36], at end insert—

      ‘(1A) Personal information under subsection (1) shall not be used except in relation to the exercise of any of the functions of the Board and the National Statistician.’.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

41

Page 14, line 40 [Clause 36], at end insert—

      ‘(1A) Personal data may be disclosed by the National Statistician under subsection (1)—

        (a) to approved researchers;

        (b) to other authorities for uses consistent with the functions of the Board and the National Statistician under the provisions of sections 48 to 50;

        (c) with the consent of the person to whom it relates;

        (d) under a community obligation for statistical purposes; and

        (e) to service providers under the provisions of section 38.’.


Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

24

Page 15, line 12 [Clause 36], at end insert ‘and only where the information is being made available for statistical purposes’.

Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer

60

Page 15, line 19 [Clause 36], at end insert—

        ‘(fa) is made, in the interests of national security, to an Intelligence Service,’

Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer

27

Page 15, line 23 [Clause 36], leave out from ‘access’ to end of line 24 and insert ‘, for the purposes of statistical research, to personal information held by it.’.


REMAINING NEW CLAUSES

Pre-release access to official statistics

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

NC5

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) The Board shall prepare, adopt and publish a Code of Practice for the pre-release of official statistics.

      (2) The Board may at any time revise the Code of Practice for the pre-release of official statistics and, if decides to do so, must publish the Code as revised.

      (3) In preparing or revising the Code of Practice for the pre-release of official statistics, the Board must consult—

        (a) the authorities responsible for the production and release of official statistics falling under the provisions of section 6(1)(a), and

        (b) such other persons as it thinks fit.

      (4) The Code of Practice for the pre-release of official statistics shall have regard to the following matters—

        (a) the circumstances in which, or descriptions of statistics in relation to which, pre-release access may or may not be granted;

        (b) the persons, or descriptions of persons, to whom pre-release access may be granted;

        (c) the period, or maximum period, during which pre-release access may be so granted;

        (d) the conditions subject to which pre-release access may be granted.

      (5) The Board shall publish annually—

        (a) a list of statistics to which pre-release access has been granted under the provisions of the Code of Practice for the pre-release of official statistics and the dates of publication; and

        (b) a list of all persons granted pre-release access under the provisions of the Code of Practice for the pre-release of official statistics.

      (6) The Board, the National Statistician, government departments, the Scottish Administration, Welsh Ministerial authorities, Northern Ireland departments and any other person acting on behalf of the Crown in the production or publication of official statistics shall—

        (a) comply with the Code of Practice for the pre-release of official statistics; and

        (b) consult the Board on matters of interpretation of the Code where appropriate.’.


Establishment of a Commission for Official Statistics

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

NC6

    To move the following Clause:—

      ‘(1) There shall be a commission named the Commission for Official Statistics (in this Act referred to as “the Commission”) for—

        (a) determining the funding of the Board; and

        (b) scrutinising the funding of the production of national statistics and official statistics.

      (2) Notwithstanding (1)(b) the Commission will not have the power to scrutinise the funding of those statistics produced by—

        (a) the Scottish Administration,

        (b) the Welsh Assembly Government, or

        (c) a Northern Ireland Assembly.

      (3) The Commission shall consist of six members of the House of Commons appointed by the House of Commons and six Members of the House of Lords appointed by the House of Lords, none of whom shall be a Minister of the Crown.

      (4) The Commission shall, from time to time, present to each House of Parliament a report on the exercise of its functions.

      (5) Schedule (Commission for Official Statistics) to this Act shall have effect as regards the Commission.’.


Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

2

Page 2, line 6 [Clause 3], leave out ‘Treasury’ and insert ‘Cabinet Office’.

Mr Alex Salmond
Mr Elfyn Llwyd
Stewart Hosie
Adam Price
Angus Robertson
Hywel Williams
Total signatories: 9

49

Page 2, line 6 [Clause 3], at end insert—

        ‘(c) at least one person appointed by Scottish Ministers.’.

Mr Alex Salmond
Mr Elfyn Llwyd
Stewart Hosie
Adam Price
Angus Robertson
Hywel Williams
Total signatories: 9

57

Page 2, line 6 [Clause 3], at end insert—

        ‘(c) at least one person appointed by Welsh Ministers.’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

3

Page 2, line 7 [Clause 3], leave out ‘Treasury’ and insert ‘Cabinet Office’.

Mr Alex Salmond
Mr Elfyn Llwyd
Stewart Hosie
Adam Price
Angus Robertson
Hywel Williams
Total signatories: 9

50

Page 2, line 10 [Clause 3], leave out paragraph (a).

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

4

Page 2, line 10 [Clause 3], leave out ‘Treasury’ and insert ‘Cabinet Office’.

Mr Alex Salmond
Mr Elfyn Llwyd
Stewart Hosie
Adam Price
Angus Robertson
Hywel Williams
Total signatories: 9

58

Page 2, line 12 [Clause 3], leave out paragraph (b).

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

5

Page 2, line 12 [Clause 3], leave out ‘Treasury’ and insert ‘Cabinet Office’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

6

Page 2, line 14 [Clause 3], leave out ‘Treasury’ and insert ‘Cabinet Office’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

7

Page 2, line 16 [Clause 3], leave out ‘Treasury’ and insert ‘Cabinet Office’.

Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer

25

Page 2, line 42 [Clause 4], leave out ‘has misbehaved’ and insert ‘is unfit for office by reason of misconduct’.


Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

42

Page 3 [Clause 5], leave out lines 18 and 19 and insert—

        ‘(b) employed to operate independently of the Board with scrutiny and oversight of the role provided by the Board.’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

8

Page 3, line 38 [Clause 6], leave out ‘Board’ and insert ‘National Statistician’.


Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

9

Page 4, line 21 [Clause 7], leave out subsection (1).

Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer

48

Page 4, line 21 [Clause 7], leave out from beginning to end of line 22 and insert—

      ‘(1) In the exercise of its functions under sections 8 to 19 the Board is to have the objective of promoting and safeguarding the production and publication of official statistics that serve the public good.

      (2) In subsection (1) the reference to serving the public good includes in particular—

        (a) informing the public about social and economic matters, and

        (b) assisting in the development and evaluation of public policy.

      (3) The Board is accordingly, in the exercise of its functions under sections 8 to 19, to promote and safeguard—’.

Mr Michael Fallon

1

Page 4, line 22 [Clause 7], after ‘safeguarding’, insert ‘for the public good’.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

43

Page 4, line 39 [Clause 8], at end insert—

      ‘(4) The Board shall have responsibility to monitor and assess the performance of the National Statistician against the assigned responsibilities.’.


Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

16

Page 5, line 11 [Clause 10], leave out ‘National’ and insert ‘Official’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

17

Page 5, line 19 [Clause 10], at end insert—

      ‘(4) In drafting the Code and supervising compliance thereto, the Board shall have regard to the duties set out in section 26 of this Act.’.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

44

Page 5, line 19 [Clause 10], at end insert—

      ‘(4) All those who produce National Statistics must conform to the Code of Practice unless the Board accepts and publishes any case for deviation, consulting the Board on matters of interpretation as necessary, and reporting any breach of the Code to the Board.’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

23

Page 5, line 20, leave out Clause 11.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

35

Page 5, line 21 [Clause 11], leave out ‘may not’ and insert ‘shall’.


Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

36

Page 5, line 32 [Clause 11], after ‘granted’, insert ‘up to a maximum of two hours before general release’.


Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

18

Page 6, line 15 [Clause 12], leave out ‘At the request of the appropriate authority’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

19

Page 6, line 16 [Clause 12], leave out ‘National’ and insert ‘Official’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

20

Page 6, line 17 [Clause 12], leave out ‘in relation to any’ and insert ‘by the authorities responsible for producing’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

21

Page 6 [Clause 12], leave out lines 19 to 22.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

22

Page 6 [Clause 12], leave out lines 29 to 44.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

34

Page 6, line 44 [Clause 12], at end insert—

      ‘(9) The Board shall have the authority to initiate an assessment process to designate any set of official statistics as National Statistics with the provision that the board must inform the appropriate authority before initiating the process.’.


Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

37

Page 8, line 11 [Clause 17], leave out subsection (4).

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

10

Page 8, line 17 [Clause 18], leave out ‘Board’ and insert ‘National Statistician’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

11

Page 8, line 19 [Clause 18], leave out ‘Board’ and insert ‘National Statistician’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

12

Page 8, line 21 [Clause 18], leave out ‘Board’ and insert ‘National Statistician’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

13

Page 8, line 23 [Clause 18], leave out ‘Board’ and insert ‘National Statistician’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

14

Page 8, line 25 [Clause 18], leave out ‘Board’ and insert ‘National Statistician’.


Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

38

Page 10, line 33 [Clause 25], leave out ‘as soon as possible thereafter’ and insert ‘concurrently’.


Mr Alex Salmond
Mr Elfyn Llwyd
Stewart Hosie
Adam Price
Angus Robertson
Hywel Williams
Total signatories: 9

51

Page 11, line 13 [Clause 27], leave out ‘with the consent of the Chancellor of the Exchequer’.

Mr Alex Salmond
Mr Elfyn Llwyd
Stewart Hosie
Adam Price
Angus Robertson
Hywel Williams
Total signatories: 9

59

Page 11, line 20 [Clause 27], leave out ‘with the consent of the Chancellor of the Exchequer’.

Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer

26

Page 11, line 35 [Clause 27], at end insert—

      ‘( ) Where the Chancellor of the Exchequer gives a direction under this section—

        (a) he must lay a copy before Parliament, and

        (b) he must notify the Scottish Ministers, the Welsh Ministers and the Department of Finance and Personnel for Northern Ireland of the direction, who must lay a copy before the Scottish Parliament, the National Assembly for Wales and the Northern Ireland Assembly respectively.

      ( ) Where the Scottish Ministers give a direction under this section—

        (a) they must lay a copy before the Scottish Parliament, and

        (b) the Chancellor of the Exchequer must lay a copy before Parliament.

      ( ) Where the Welsh Ministers give a direction under this section—

        (a) they must lay a copy before the National Assembly for Wales, and

        (b) the Chancellor of the Exchequer must lay a copy before Parliament.

      ( ) Where the Department of Finance and Personnel for Northern Ireland gives a direction under this section—

        (a) it must lay a copy before the Northern Ireland Assembly, and

        (b) the Chancellor of the Exchequer must lay a copy before Parliament.’.

Mr Alex Salmond
Mr Elfyn Llwyd
Stewart Hosie
Adam Price
Angus Robertson
Hywel Williams
Total signatories: 9

52

Page 11, line 39 [Clause 27], leave out subsection (9).


Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

45

Page 12, line 17 [Clause 28], at end insert—

      ‘(5) The National Statistician is to be the Government’s principal advisor on statistics and shall provide professional leadership to all persons engaged in statistical production and publication.’.

Mrs Theresa Villiers
Mr Mark Hoban
Mr David Evennett

15

Page 12, line 19 [Clause 29], leave out ‘Board’ and insert ‘executive office created under the provisions of subsection (5), below’.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

39

Page 12, line 27 [Clause 29], at end insert—

      ‘(3A) The National Statistician shall—

        (a) promote the coordination of statistical planning and production across government; and

        (b) promote the production of statistics that are consistent across the UK.’.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

46

Page 12, line 28 [Clause 29], after ‘may’, insert ‘not’.

Dr Vincent Cable
Julia Goldsworthy

47

Page 12, line 29 [Clause 29], leave out ‘not’.


Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer

28

Page 16, line 20 [Clause 37], leave out ‘this section’ and insert ‘subsection (1)’.

 
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Prepared: 13 March 2007