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Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Bill [HL]


Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Bill [HL]
Schedule 1 — The National Consumer Council
Part 5 — Funding and accounts

49

 

(d)   

the Chief Executive or any other member of staff.

Application of seal and proof of instruments

24         

The application of the seal of the Council is to be authenticated by the

signature of—

(a)   

any member of the Council,

5

(b)   

the Chief Executive of the Council, or

(c)   

any person who has been authorised (whether generally or

specifically) by the Council for the purpose.

25         

Any contract or instrument which, if entered into or executed by an

individual, would not need to be under seal may be entered into or executed

10

on behalf of the Council by any person who has been authorised (whether

generally or specifically) by the Council for the purpose.

26         

A document purporting to be duly executed under the seal of the Council,

or signed on its behalf—

(a)   

is to be received in evidence, and

15

(b)   

is to be taken to be executed or signed in that way, unless the

contrary is proved.

Offices

27    (1)  

The Council must maintain an office in each of England, Northern Ireland,

Scotland and Wales.

20

      (2)  

The Council may, with the approval of the Secretary of State, establish

additional offices in the United Kingdom.

Part 5

Funding and accounts

Funding

25

28         

The Secretary of State may pay the Council out of money provided by

Parliament such sums as the Secretary of State may determine towards the

Council’s expenses.

29    (1)  

Section 8 of the Utilities Act 2000 (c. 27) (payments by licence holders

relating to new arrangements) is amended as follows.

30

      (2)  

In subsection (2) after “subsection (3)” insert “or (3A)”.

      (3)  

In subsection (3)—

(a)   

for “Those expenses” substitute “The expenses within this

subsection”,

(b)   

in paragraph (a) for “Council” substitute “Gas and Electricity

35

Consumer Council”, and

(c)   

omit paragraph (b) and the “and” immediately preceding it.

      (4)  

After that subsection insert—

“(3A)   

The expenses within this subsection are—

 

 

Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Bill [HL]
Schedule 1 — The National Consumer Council
Part 5 — Funding and accounts

50

 

(a)   

the appropriate proportion of the expenses of the Council

(including expenses which relate to its establishment but not

expenses within paragraph (c));

(b)   

the appropriate proportion of the expenses of the Secretary of

State which relate to the establishment of the Council;

5

(c)   

any expenses of the Council, the Secretary of State or the Gas

and Electricity Consumer Council which relate to a transfer

scheme made in respect of the Gas and Electricity Consumer

Council under section 35(2)(a) or (7) of the Consumers, Estate

Agents and Redress Act 2007;

10

(d)   

the expenses of the Secretary of State which relate to the

abolition of the Gas and Electricity Consumer Council;

(e)   

the expenses of the Office of Fair Trading which relate to the

expansion of an OFT scheme to enable it to cater for gas and

electricity consumers;

15

(f)   

the appropriate proportion of the expenses of the Office of

Fair Trading on, or in connection with, the support of any

OFT scheme.

(3B)   

The “appropriate proportion” of any expenses means such

proportion of the expenses as the Secretary of State considers is

20

reasonable having regard to—

(a)   

in the case of expenses within subsection (3A)(a) or (b), the

functions exercisable by the Council in relation to gas and

electricity consumers, and

(b)   

in the case of expenses within subsection (3A)(f), the

25

functions under the OFT scheme which are exercisable in

relation to gas and electricity consumers.”

      (5)  

In subsection (4) for paragraphs (a) and (b) substitute—

“(a)   

the establishment of the Council, or

(b)   

the abolition of the Gas and Electricity Consumer Council.”

30

      (6)  

For subsection (5) substitute—

“(5)   

The Authority may, in accordance with this section, make such

incidental or consequential modifications of—

(a)   

the other conditions of a gas licence or an electricity licence,

or

35

(b)   

any code or agreement relevant to the conditions of such a

licence,

   

as it considers necessary or expedient in consequence of, or of

preparations for, an event mentioned in subsection (4)(a) or (b).”

      (7)  

In subsection (6) after “licence” insert “or any code or agreement”.

40

      (8)  

Omit subsection (7).

      (9)  

For subsection (8) substitute—

“(8)   

The powers of the Authority under subsection (4) (as amended by

paragraph 29 of Schedule 1 to the Consumers, Estate Agents and

Redress Act 2007), and subsection (5) as it applies in relation to that

45

subsection, may not be exercised after the end of the period of 2 years

beginning with the commencement of that paragraph.”

 

 

Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Bill [HL]
Schedule 1 — The National Consumer Council
Part 5 — Funding and accounts

51

 

     (10)  

In subsection (9) after “(3)” insert “or (3A)”.

     (11)  

After that subsection insert—

“(10)   

For the purposes of this section—

“consumer” has the same meaning as in Part 1 of the

Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Act 2007 (see section

5

3 of that Act);

“gas and electricity consumers” means consumers in relation to

gas conveyed through pipes or electricity conveyed by

distribution systems or transmission systems;

“OFT scheme” means any public consumer advice scheme

10

supported by the Office of Fair Trading.”

30         

In section 39 of the Postal Services Act 2000 (c. 26) (recovery of costs of the

Council etc)—

(a)   

for “the Council”, in the first place, substitute “the Consumer Council

for Postal Services”, and

15

(b)   

omit “or of the Secretary of State in relation to the establishment of

the Council”.

31    (1)  

After section 39 of that Act insert—

“39A    

Licences and the new arrangements

(1)   

The conditions of a licence may require the payment by the licence

20

holder of sums relating to any of the expenses mentioned in

subsection (2).

(2)   

The expenses within this subsection are—

(a)   

the appropriate proportion of the expenses of the Council

(including expenses which relate to its establishment but not

25

expenses within paragraph (c));

(b)   

the appropriate proportion of the expenses of the Secretary of

State which relate to the establishment of the Council;

(c)   

any expenses of the Council, the Secretary of State or the

Consumer Council for Postal Services which relate to a

30

transfer scheme made in respect of the Consumer Council for

Postal Services under section 35(2)(a) or (7) of the Consumers,

Estate Agents and Redress Act 2007;

(d)   

the expenses of the Secretary of State which relate to the

abolition of the Consumer Council for Postal Services;

35

(e)   

the expenses of the Office of Fair Trading which relate to the

expansion of an OFT scheme to enable it to cater for postal

services consumers;

(f)   

the appropriate proportion of the expenses of the Office of

Fair Trading on, or in connection with, the support of any

40

OFT scheme.

(3)   

The “appropriate proportion” of any expenses means such

proportion of the expenses as the Secretary of State considers is

reasonable having regard to—

(a)   

in the case of expenses within subsection (2)(a) or (b), the

45

functions exercisable by the Council in relation to postal

services consumers, and

 

 

Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Bill [HL]
Schedule 1 — The National Consumer Council
Part 5 — Funding and accounts

52

 

(b)   

in the case of expenses within subsection (2)(f), the functions

under the OFT scheme which are exercisable in relation to

those consumers.

(4)   

The Commission may, in accordance with this section, modify any

condition included in a licence by virtue of section 39 where the

5

Commission considers it necessary or expedient to do so in

consequence of, or of preparations for—

(a)   

the establishment of the Council, or

(b)   

the abolition of the Consumer Council for Postal Services.

(5)   

The Commission may, in accordance with this section, make such

10

incidental or consequential modifications of the other conditions of a

licence, as it considers necessary or expedient in consequence of, or

of preparations for, an event mentioned in subsection (4)(a) or (b).

(6)   

Before modifying the conditions of a licence under subsection (4) or

(5) the Commission must consult the licence holder.

15

(7)   

The powers of the Commission under subsection (4) or (5) may not

be exercised after the end of the period of 2 years beginning with the

commencement of those subsections.

(8)   

The Secretary of State may give directions to the Commission for the

purpose of securing that sums relating to any of the expenses

20

mentioned in subsection (2) are included in the sums payable by

virtue of conditions in licences and the Commission must comply

with any such direction.

(9)   

In this section—

“consumer” has the same meaning as in Part 1 of the

25

Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Act 2007 (see section

3 of that Act);

“postal services consumers” means consumers in relation to

relevant postal services (within the meaning of section 41);

“OFT scheme” means any public consumer advice scheme

30

supported by the Office of Fair Trading.”

Accounts

32    (1)  

The Council must—

(a)   

keep proper accounts and proper records in relation to the accounts,

and

35

(b)   

prepare in respect of each financial year a statement of accounts.

      (2)  

Each statement of accounts must comply with any directions given by the

Secretary of State, with the approval of the Treasury, as to—

(a)   

the information to be contained in it and the manner in which it is to

be presented;

40

(b)   

the methods and principles according to which the statement is to be

prepared;

(c)   

the additional information (if any) which is to be provided for the

information of Parliament.

      (3)  

The Council must give a copy of each statement of accounts—

45

(a)   

to the Secretary of State, and

 

 

Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Bill [HL]
Schedule 1 — The National Consumer Council
Part 6 — Status etc

53

 

(b)   

to the Comptroller and Auditor General,

           

before the end of the month of August next following the financial year to

which the statement relates.

      (4)  

The Comptroller and Auditor General must—

(a)   

examine, certify and report on each statement of accounts which is

5

received under sub-paragraph (3), and

(b)   

send a copy of the certified statement and the Comptroller and

Auditor General’s report to the Secretary of State, who shall lay them

before Parliament.

Part 6

10

Status etc

Status

33    (1)  

The Council is not to be regarded—

(a)   

as the servant or agent of the Crown, or

(b)   

as enjoying any status, immunity or privilege of the Crown.

15

      (2)  

Accordingly, the Council’s property is not to be regarded as property of or

held on behalf of the Crown.

Disqualification

34    (1)  

In Part 2 of Schedule 1 to the House of Commons Disqualification Act 1975

(c. 24) (bodies of which all members are disqualified) at the appropriate

20

place insert—

“The National Consumer Council.”

      (2)  

In Part 3 of that Schedule (other disqualifying offices) at the appropriate

place insert—

“A member of a committee of the National Consumer Council

25

established under section 1 of, or paragraph 12 of Schedule 1

to, the Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Act 2007

(territorial and regional committees).”

      (3)  

In Part 2 of Schedule 1 to the Northern Ireland Assembly Disqualification

Act 1975 (c. 25) (bodies of which all members are disqualified) at the

30

appropriate place insert—

“The National Consumer Council.”

      (4)  

In Part 3 of that Schedule (other disqualifying offices) at the appropriate

place insert—

“A member of a committee of the National Consumer Council

35

established under section 1 of, or paragraph 12 of Schedule 1

to, the Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Act 2007

(territorial and regional committees).”

Freedom of information

35         

In Part 6 of Schedule 1 to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (c. 36) (other

40

public bodies and offices which are public authorities) at the appropriate

 

 

Consumers, Estate Agents and Redress Bill [HL]
Schedule 1 — The National Consumer Council
Part 6 — Status etc

54

 

place insert—

“The National Consumer Council.”

Public records

36    (1)  

In Schedule 1 to the Public Records Act 1958 (c. 51) (definition of public

records) at the appropriate place in Part 2 of the Table at the end of

5

paragraph 3 insert—

“The National Consumer Council.”

      (2)  

The records of the Council are to include—

(a)   

on and after commencement of section 30(1), the records of the Gas

and Electricity Consumer Council, and

10

(b)   

on and after commencement of section 30(2), the records of the

Consumer Council for Postal Services,

           

and those records are to be dealt with accordingly under the Public Records

Act 1958.

Parliamentary Commissioner Act 1967

15

37         

In Schedule 2 to the Parliamentary Commissioner Act 1967 (c. 13)

(departments and authorities subject to investigation) at the appropriate

place insert—

“The National Consumer Council.”

Exemption from liability in damages

20

38    (1)  

This paragraph applies to—

(a)   

the Council;

(b)   

a member of the Council;

(c)   

a member of any territorial committee, regional committee or other

committee or sub-committee of the Council;

25

(d)   

the Chief Executive or any other member of the Council’s staff.

      (2)  

A person to whom this paragraph applies is not liable in damages for

anything done or omitted in the exercise or purported exercise of the

functions of the Council conferred by or by virtue of this or any other

enactment.

30

      (3)  

But sub-paragraph (2) does not apply—

(a)   

if it is shown that the act or omission was in bad faith, or

(b)   

so as to prevent an award of damages made in respect of an act or

omission on the ground that the act or omission was unlawful as a

result of section 6(1) of the Human Rights Act 1998 (c. 42).

35

      (4)  

In this paragraph “enactment” means—

(a)   

an Act of Parliament,

(b)   

an Act of the Scottish Parliament,

(c)   

a Measure or Act of the National Assembly for Wales, or

(d)   

Northern Ireland legislation,

40

           

whenever passed or made.

 

 

 
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