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Lord Donaldson of Lymington moved Amendment No. 33:

The noble and learned Lord said: My Lords, this amendment raises precisely the same question as that raised by the noble Lord, Lord Brittan; that is, why take it out when it does not matter? I beg to move.

On Question, Whether the said amendment (No. 33) shall be agreed to?

Their Lordships divided: Contents, 181; Not-Contents, 110.

Division No. 7


Ackner, L.
Addington, L.
Alderdice, L.
Alexander of Weedon, L.
Ampthill, L.
Anelay of St Johns, B.
Astor, V.
Astor of Hever, L.
Avebury, L.
Barker, B.
Bell, L.
Belstead, L.
Black of Crossharbour, L.
Blackwell, L.
Blaker, L.
Blatch, B.
Boardman, L.
Bowness, L.
Brabazon of Tara, L.
Bradshaw, L.
Brennan, L.
Bridgeman, V.
Brigstocke, B.
Brittan of Spennithorne, L.
Brooke of Sutton Mandeville, L.
Brougham and Vaux, L.
Burnham, L.
Buscombe, B.
Byford, B.
Caithness, E.
Campbell of Alloway, L.
Carnegy of Lour, B.
Carr of Hadley, L.
Clement-Jones, L.
Colwyn, L.
Condon, L.
Cope of Berkeley, L. [Teller]
Craig of Radley, L.
Cumberlege, B.
Dahrendorf, L.
Deedes, L.
Dholakia, L.
Dixon-Smith, L.
Donaldson of Lymington, L.
Eccles of Moulton, B.
Eden of Winton, L.
Elliott of Morpeth, L.
Elton, L.
Falkland, V.
Feldman, L.
Flather, B.
Fookes, B.
Forsyth of Drumlean, L.
Gardner of Parkes, B.
Garel-Jones, L.
Geddes, L.
Gilmour of Craigmillar, L.
Glentoran, L.
Goodhart, L.
Goschen, V.
Greaves, L.
Hamwee, B.
Hanham, B.
Hannay of Chiswick, L.
Harris of Peckham, L.
Harris of Richmond, B.
Hayhoe, L.
Henley, L.
Hereford, Bp.
Higgins, L.
Hodgson of Astley Abbotts, L.
Hogg, B.
Holme of Cheltenham, L.
Home, E.
Howe, E.
Howe of Aberavon, L.
Howe of Idlicote, B.
Howell of Guildford, L.
Hunt of Wirral, L.
Hurd of Westwell, L.
Hylton, L.
Jacobs, L.
Jenkin of Roding, L.
Joffe, L.
Jopling, L.
Kennedy of The Shaws, B.
Kimball, L.
King of Bridgwater, L.
Kingsland, L.
Laing of Dunphail, L.
Laird, L.
Lane of Horsell, L.
Lester of Herne Hill, L.
Linklater of Butterstone, B.
Liverpool, E.
Livsey of Talgarth, L.
Lucas, L.
Ludford, B.
Luke, L.
Mackay of Clashfern, L.
Maclennan of Rogart, L.
McNally, L.
Maddock, B.
Mancroft, L.
Mar and Kellie, E.
Marlesford, L.
Mayhew of Twysden, L.
Miller of Chilthorne Domer, B.
Miller of Hendon, B.
Monro of Langholm, L.
Monson, L.
Montrose, D.
Moore of Lower Marsh, L.
Moynihan, L.
Murton of Lindisfarne, L.
Newby, L.
Newton of Braintree, L.
Noakes, B.
Northbrook, L.
Northesk, E.
Northover, B.
O'Cathain, B.
Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay, L.
Onslow, E.
Oppenheim-Barnes, B.
Oxfuird, V.
Park of Monmouth, B.
Parkinson, L.
Pearson of Rannoch, L.
Phillips of Sudbury, L.
Platt of Writtle, B.
Plumb, L.
Plummer of St. Marylebone, L.
Portsmouth, Bp.
Razzall, L.
Reay, L.
Redesdale, L.
Rees, L.
Rees-Mogg, L.
Renfrew of Kaimsthorn, L.
Rennard, L.
Renton, L.
Richardson of Duntisbourne, L.
Roberts of Conwy, L.
Rodgers of Quarry Bank, L.
Roper, L. [Teller]
Rotherwick, L.
Russell, E.
Russell-Johnston, L.
St John of Fawsley, L.
Scott of Needham Market, B.
Seccombe, B.
Selborne, E.
Selsdon, L.
Sharman, L.
Sharples, B.
Shaw of Northstead, L.
Shutt of Greetland, L.
Skelmersdale, L.
Slim, V.
Smith of Clifton, L.
Stern, B.
Stevens of Ludgate, L.
Stoddart of Swindon, L.
Strathclyde, L.
Taverne, L.
Taylor of Warwick, L.
Tebbit, L.
Thomas of Gresford, L.
Thomas of Walliswood, B.
Tope, L.
Trefgarne, L.
Vivian, L.
Waddington, L.
Wallace of Saltaire, L.
Walmsley, B.
Watson of Richmond, L.
Wilcox, B.
Williams of Crosby, B.
Williamson of Horton, L.
Wolfson, L.


Acton, L.
Ahmed, L.
Alli, L.
Andrews, B.
Archer of Sandwell, L.
Ashley of Stoke, L.
Ashton of Upholland, B.
Attenborough, L.
Bach, L.
Bassam of Brighton, L.
Billingham, B.
Blackstone, B.
Bragg, L.
Brett, L.
Brooke of Alverthorpe, L.
Brookman, L.
Burlison, L.
Campbell-Savours, L.
Carter, L. [Teller]
Chandos, V.
Christopher, L.
Cohen of Pimlico, B.
Crawley, B.
Darcy de Knayth, B.
David, B.
Davies of Coity, L.
Davies of Oldham, L.
Dean of Thornton-le-Fylde, B.
Donoughue, L.
Dormand of Easington, L.
Dubs, L.
Elder, L.
Evans of Parkside, L.
Falconer of Thoroton, L.
Farrington of Ribbleton, B.
Faulkner of Worcester, L.
Filkin, L.
Fyfe of Fairfield, L.
Gale, B.
Gibson of Market Rasen, B.
Gladwin of Clee, L.
Goldsmith, L.
Goudie, B.
Gould of Potternewton, B.
Graham of Edmonton, L.
Grocott, L.
Harrison, L.
Haskel, L.
Hayman, B.
Hilton of Eggardon, B.
Hollis of Heigham, B.
Howells of St. Davids, B.
Howie of Troon, L.
Hoyle, L.
Hughes of Woodside, L.
Hunt of Kings Heath, L.
Irvine of Lairg, L. (Lord Chancellor)
Jay of Paddington, B.
Jeger, B.
Jones, L.
Kirkhill, L.
Layard, L.
Lea of Crondall, L.
Levy, L.
Lipsey, L.
Listowel, E.
Macdonald of Tradeston, L.
McIntosh of Haringey, L. [Teller]
McIntosh of Hudnall, B.
MacKenzie of Culkein, L.
Marsh, L.
Massey of Darwen, B.
Milner of Leeds, L.
Mitchell, L.
Morgan, L.
Morgan of Huyton, B.
Morris of Manchester, L.
Murray of Epping Forest, L.
Nicol, B.
Paul, L.
Pendry, L.
Peston, L.
Plant of Highfield, L.
Ramsay of Cartvale, B.
Randall of St. Budeaux, L.
Rendell of Babergh, B.
Richard, L.
Rooker, L.
Sainsbury of Turville, L.
Sawyer, L.
Scotland of Asthal, B.
Sewel, L.
Sheldon, L.
Simon, V.
Smith of Leigh, L.
Stone of Blackheath, L.
Strabolgi, L.
Symons of Vernham Dean, B.
Taylor of Blackburn, L.
Temple-Morris, L.
Thornton, B.
Tomlinson, L.
Turner of Camden, B.
Walker of Doncaster, L.
Warwick of Undercliffe, B.
Weatherill, L.
Whitaker, B.
Whitty, L.
Williams of Mostyn, L. (Lord Privy Seal)
Woolmer of Leeds, L.

Resolved in the affirmative, and amendment agreed to accordingly.

6 Dec 2001 : Column 1019

8.21 p.m.

Lord Davies of Oldham: My Lords, I beg to move that consideration on Report be now adjourned. In moving the Motion, I suggest that the Report stage begin again not before 9.22 p.m.

Moved accordingly, and, on Question, Motion agreed to.

Local Government Commission for England (Transfer of Functions) Order 2001

8.22 p.m.

Lord Filkin rose to move, That the draft order laid before the House on 14th November be approved [10th Report from the Joint Committee].

The noble Lord said: My Lords, during the debates on the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000, the Government made it clear that they would confer responsibility for local government electoral arrangements—the boundaries of electoral areas and the number of councillors—on the Electoral Commission. This order achieves that by transferring all the current functions of the Local Government Commission to the Electoral Commission and by giving to it the Secretary of State's powers to implement recommendations relating to electoral arrangements.

Transferring these functions to the Electoral Commission is part of our reform and modernisation of the democratic framework of this country and will contribute to strengthening public trust and confidence in electoral arrangements by taking decisions on such issues as the numbers and boundaries of electoral divisions and the number of councillors entirely out of the political arena.

The current functions of the Local Government Commission also include making recommendations about administrative boundaries and structure. We

6 Dec 2001 : Column 1020

are also transferring these functions, along with the Local Government Commission's staff and assets. The House will wish to note, however, that we have put in place arrangements that recognise the Electoral Commission's independence by removing the Secretary of State's powers of direction. Instead, the order allows the Secretary of State to request the Electoral Commission to make recommendations on boundary and structure issues. It will remain the Secretary of State's responsibility to implement such changes, as now, through orders subject to parliamentary approval.

In conclusion, the order will mark another step in our reform of the electoral and democratic machinery in this country, bringing greater transparency and accountability to the review of electoral arrangements. I commend the order to the House.

Moved, That the draft order laid before the House on 14th November be approved [10th Report from the Joint Committee].—(Lord Filkin.)

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