Immigration and Asylum Bill - continued        House of Lords

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Support and assistance by local authorities etc.
Provision of support by local authorities.     90. - (1) A local authority may provide support for supported persons and their dependants (if any) in accordance with arrangements made by the Secretary of State under section 85.
      (2) Such support may be provided by the local authority-
    (a) in one or more of the ways mentioned in section 86(1) and (2);
    (b) whether the arrangements in question are made with the authority or with another person.
      (3) The Executive may provide support by way of accommodation for asylum-seekers and their dependants (if any) in accordance with arrangements made by the Secretary of State under section 85, whether the arrangements in question are made with the Executive or with another person.
Local authority and other assistance for Secretary of State.     91. - (1) This section applies if the Secretary of State asks-
    (a) a local authority,
    (b) a registered social landlord,
    (c) a registered housing association in Scotland or Northern Ireland, or
    (d) the Executive,
  to assist him to exercise his power under section 85 to provide accommodation.
      (2) The person to whom the request is made must co-operate in giving the Secretary of State such assistance in the exercise of that power as is reasonable in the circumstances.
      (3) Subsection (2) does not require a registered social landlord to act beyond its powers.
      (4) A local authority must supply to the Secretary of State such information about their housing accommodation (whether or not occupied) as he may from time to time request.
      (5) The information must be provided in such form and manner as the Secretary of State may direct.
      (6) "Registered social landlord" has the same meaning as in Part I of the Housing Act 1996.
      (7) "Registered housing association" has the same meaning-
    (a) in relation to Scotland, as in the Housing Associations Act 1985; and
    (b) in relation to Northern Ireland, as in Part II of the Housing (Northern Ireland) Order 1992.
Reception zones.     92. - (1) The Secretary of State may by order designate an area consisting of the areas of one or more local authorities as a reception zone.
      (2) Before designating an area, the Secretary of State must consult such local authorities, local authority associations and other persons as he thinks appropriate.
      (3) Subsection (4) applies if the Secretary of State considers that-
    (a) a local authority whose area is within a reception zone has suitable housing accommodation within that zone; or
    (b) the Executive has suitable housing accommodation within a reception zone.
      (4) The Secretary of State may direct the local authority or the Executive to make available such of the accommodation as may be specified in the direction for a period so specified-
    (a) to him for the purpose of providing support under section 85; or
    (b) to a person with whom the Secretary of State has made arrangements under section 85.
      (5) A period specified in a direction under subsection (4)-
    (a) begins on a date so specified; and
    (b) must not exceed five years.
      (6) A direction under subsection (4) is enforceable, on an application made on behalf of the Secretary of State, by injunction or in Scotland an order under section 45(b) of the Court of Session Act 1988.
      (7) Housing accommodation is suitable for the purposes of subsection (3) if it-
    (a) is unoccupied;
    (b) would be likely to remain unoccupied for the foreseeable future if not made available; and
    (c) is appropriate for the accommodation of persons supported under this Part or capable of being made so with minor work.
      (8) The Secretary of State must make regulations with respect to the general management of any housing accommodation for which a direction under subsection (4) is, for the time being, in force.
      (9) Regulations under subsection (8) must include provision-
    (a) for the calculation of the amount of rent or other charges to be payable in relation to the accommodation;
    (b) as to the times at which payments of rent or other charges are to be made;
    (c) as to the responsibility for maintenance of, and repairs to, the accommodation;
    (d) enabling the accommodation to be inspected in such circumstances as may be prescribed by the body to which the direction was given.
Asylum Support Adjudicators.     93. - (1) There are to be adjudicators to hear appeals under this Part.
      (2) A person appointed as an adjudicator under this Part is to be known as an Asylum Support Adjudicator (but is referred to in this Part as "an adjudicator").
      (3) Schedule 9 makes further provision with respect to adjudicators.
Appeals.     94. - (1) If, on an application for support under section 85, the Secretary of State decides that the applicant does not qualify for support under that section, the applicant may appeal to an adjudicator.
      (2) If the Secretary of State decides to stop providing support for a person under section 85 before that support would otherwise have come to an end, that person may appeal to an adjudicator.
      (3) On an appeal under this section, the adjudicator may-
    (a) require the Secretary of State to reconsider the matter; or
    (b) substitute his decision for the decision appealed against.
      (4) The adjudicator must give his reasons in writing.
      (5) The decision of the adjudicator is final.
      (6) If an appeal is determined against the appellant, no further application from him for support under section 85 is to be entertained unless the Secretary of State is satisfied that there has been a material change in the circumstances.
      (7) The Secretary of State may pay any reasonable travelling expenses incurred by an appellant in connection with attendance at any place for the purposes of an appeal under this section.
Secretary of State's rules.     95. - (1) The Secretary of State may make rules regulating-
    (a) the bringing of appeals under this Part; and
    (b) the practice and procedure of the adjudicators.
      (2) The rules may, in particular, make provision-
    (a) for the period within which an appeal must be brought;
    (b) as to the burden of proof on an appeal;
    (c) as to the giving and admissibility of evidence;
    (d) for summoning witnesses;
    (e) for an appeal to be heard in the absence of the appellant;
    (f) for determining an appeal without a hearing;
    (g) requiring reports of decisions of adjudicators to be published;
    (h) conferring such ancillary powers on adjudicators as the Secretary of State considers necessary for the proper discharge of their functions.
      (3) In making the rules, the Secretary of State must have regard to the desirability of securing, so far as is reasonably practicable, that appeals are brought and disposed of with the minimum of delay.
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