Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Twenty-Fifth Report


Memorandum from the Department for Education and Skills


1. The Committee requested a memorandum on the following points.

(1) In regulation 5(3), should "the number of awards" read "the number of leviable awards"?

(2) It seems to the Committee that regulation 6(1) and (2) is drafted in an unnecessarily complex and obscure way. The following version appears to the Committee to have the same effect. Does the Department agree that these provisions could have been expressed more simply and clearly?

"Calculation of levy - supplementary

6. - (1) This regulation applies where -

    (a) the levy for any accounting period or for any accounting periods comprising an audit period (either such period being referred to in this regulation as a "relevant period") has been calculated on the basis of an estimate made in accordance with regulation 5(2) or (3); and

    (b) a relevant event subsequently occurs.

(2) The amount of the levy for the first accounting period to follow the occurrence of the relevant event shall be adjusted to take account of the difference between the actual and estimated number of leviable awards made during the relevant period.

(3) Where the adjustment under paragraph (2) would produce a negative amount of levy, the levy shall be treated as zero, and a similar adjustment shall be made in respect of each subsequent accounting period until a positive sum is produced.

(4) In this regulation a "relevant event" is ¼¼ (as before)."

2. On the first point the Department agrees that "the number of awards" should read "the number of leviable awards" and the regulations will be amended before the first occasion on which an estimate could be made under regulation 5(3).

3. On the second point the Department agrees that the drafting approach suggested by the Committee expresses the point more simply and clearly than the provisions currently in the regulations although the Department would not necessarily agree that regulations 6(1) and (2) are drafted in an obscure way. A point which does arise is whether the Committee's draft deals with the case where more than one auditors' certificate is submitted late at the same time, with the result that there will be more than one separate adjustment to the levy for a single accounting period. The regulations sought to deal with this point by the words in brackets in the definitions of B and C. The Department will work on adding this element to the Committee's approach with a view to a possible amendment of regulation 6.

25th March 2002

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