House of Lords Reform Bill

AMENDMENTS
TO BE MOVED
IN COMMITTEE

Clause 1

THE EARL OF CAITHNESS

 

Leave out Clause 1 and insert —

;The House of Lords Appointments Commission

(1) There is to be a body corporate known as the House of Lords Appointments Commission (referred to in this Act as “the Commission”).

(2) Schedule (the House of Lords Appointments Commission) has effect.”

 

Leave out Clause 1 and insert —

omposition of the House of Lords

The House of Lords is to consist of 300 appointed members of which—

(a) 99 will be elected from the Labour party peers;

(b) 99 will be elected from the Conservative party peers;

(c) 41 will be elected from the Liberal Democrat peers;

(d) 61 will be elected from the cross bench and independent peers;

(e) up to 12 will be Lords Spiritual.”

 

Leave out Clause 1 and insert the following new Clause—

“The Joint Committee on the House of Lords Appointments Commission

(1) There is to be a committee known as the Joint Committee on the House of Lords Appointments Commission (referred to in this Act as “the Joint Committee”).

(2) Schedule (the Joint Committee on the House of Lords Appointments Commission) has effect.”

After Clause 5

THE EARL OF CAITHNESS

 

Insert the following new Clause—

“Restriction on former MPs being appointed as members of the House of Lords

(1) A former member of the House of Commons (“P”) is disqualified from being appointed to the House of Lords for the duration of the disqualification period.

(2) The disqualification period is the period of 4 years and 1 month beginning with the day on which P ceased (or last ceased) to be a member of the House of Commons.

(3) This section does not apply in relation to a member of the House of Lords as a Lord Spiritual.”

After Clause 19

THE EARL OF CAITHNESS

 

Insert the following new Schedule—

“THE HOUSE OF LORDS APPOINTMENTS COMMISSION The Commissioners

1 (1) The Commission is to consist of seven members (“Commissioners”) appointed by Her Majesty.

(2) One of the Commissioners (“the chair”) is to be appointed by Her Majesty to chair the Commission.

(3) Her Majesty’s powers under sub-paragraphs (1) and (2) are exercisable on the recommendation of the Prime Minister.

(4) The Prime Minister is to select persons for recommendation on merit on the basis of fair and open competition.

(5) A Minister of the Crown may not be appointed as a Commissioner.

(6) If a Commissioner becomes a Minister of the Crown, that person ceases to be a Commissioner.

Terms and conditions: general

2 (1) Subject to the provisions of this Schedule, the chair and the other Commissioners hold office in accordance with the terms and conditions of their appointment.

(2) Those terms and conditions are to be determined by the Joint Committee.

Terms of office

3 (1) The chair and the other Commissioners are to be appointed for a fixed term of 10 years.

(2) A person who ceases to hold office as the chair also ceases to hold office as a Commissioner.

(3) A person may not be appointed as a Commissioner more than once.

Resignation

4 (1) The chair may resign from office by notifying the Prime Minister of the resignation.

(2) The other Commissioners may resign from office by notifying the chair (or, if the office of chair is vacant, the Prime Minister) of the resignation.

Removal from office

5 (1) Her Majesty may remove the chair from office on an address of both Houses of Parliament.

(2) Her Majesty may remove any of the other Commissioners from office on an address of both Houses of Parliament.

(3) A motion for an address under sub-paragraph (1) or (2) may be made (in either House) only if the Joint Committee has reported to the House that it is satisfied that one or more of the removal conditions is met.

(4) The removal conditions are that—

(a) the person is absent from 3 successive meetings of the Commission without the Commission’s approval,

(b) the person is convicted of an offence,

(c) a bankruptcy restrictions order or undertaking (but not an interim order) under a provision listed in sub-paragraph (6) comes into force in relation to the person,

(d) a debt relief restrictions order or undertaking (but not an interim order) under Schedule 4ZB to the Insolvency Act 1986 comes into force in relation to the person, or

(e) the person is unfit or unable to carry out the functions of the office.

(5) For the purpose of determining if a person is convicted of an offence—

(a) it does not matter where the person is convicted, and

(b) an act punishable under the law of a country or territory outside the United Kingdom is an offence for the purposes of this paragraph (however it is described in that law).

(6) The provisions referred to in sub-paragraph (4)(c) are—

(a) Schedule 4A to the Insolvency Act 1986;

(b) section 56A or 56G of the Bankruptcy (Scotland) Act 1985;

(c) Schedule 2A to the Insolvency (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 (S.I. 1989/2405 (N.I. 19)).

Remuneration

6 (1) The terms and conditions on which a person is appointed as the chair or as one of the other Commissioners may provide for the Commission—

(a) to pay remuneration and allowances to the person;

(b) to make provision for a pension in relation to that person.

(2) The Commission must make the payment or provision accordingly.

Code of conduct

7 (1) The Commission must prepare, and may from time to time revise, a code of conduct for the chair and the other Commissioners.

(2) The code must in particular—

(a) incorporate the Nolan principles or such other similar principles as may be adopted by the Commission from time to time, and

(b) include provision about the disclosure of interests by the chair and the other Commissioners.

(3) “The Nolan principles” means the seven general principles of public life set out in the First Report of the Committee on Standards in Public Life (Cm 2850).

(4) The Commission must submit the code (or revision) to the Joint Committee.

(5) The code does not come into effect until it is approved by the Joint Committee.

Powers

8 The Commission may do anything (except borrow money) which is calculated to facilitate the carrying out of its functions or is incidental or conducive to the carrying out of those functions.

Committees etc

9 (1) The Commission may establish committees, and committees of the Commission may establish sub-committees.

(2) All members of a committee or sub-committee must be Commissioners.

(3) A committee may delegate functions (including functions delegated to it) to a sub-committee or to one of the Commissioners.

Procedure and proceedings

10 (1) The Commission may determine its own procedure and the procedure of its committees and sub-committees (including quorum).

(2) The validity of proceedings of the Commission or a committee or sub-committee is not affected by—

(a) a vacancy among the members, or

(b) a defect in the appointment of a member.

Staff

11 (1) The Commission must appoint a chief executive.

(2) The Commission may appoint other staff.

(3) The chief executive and other staff are to be appointed on terms and conditions determined by the Commission, having regard to the desirability of keeping them broadly in line with those applying to persons employed in the civil service of the State.

Interim staff

12 (1) The chair of the Joint Committee may appoint a person to act as chief executive until the first appointment under paragraph 11(1) takes effect.

(2) A person acting under sub-paragraph (1) may incur expenditure and do other things (including appointing persons to the Commission’s staff) in the name and on behalf of the Commission—

(a) before the membership of the Commission is first constituted in accordance with paragraph 1, and

(b) after that, until the Commission determines otherwise.

(3) A person’s powers under sub-paragraph (2) are exercisable subject to any directions given to the person by the chair of the Joint Committee.

(4) The chair of the Joint Committee may appoint other persons to the Commission’s staff.

(5) The chair of the Joint Committee may not exercise the power in sub-paragraph (4) after the membership of the Commission is first constituted in accordance with paragraph 1.

Staff pensions

13 (1) Employment by the Commission is included among the kinds of employment to which a scheme under section 1 of the Superannuation Act 1972 may apply.

(2) The Commission must pay to the Minister for the Civil Service the sums determined by the Minister in respect of any increase attributable to this paragraph in the sums payable out of money provided by Parliament under that Act.

(3) In Schedule 1 to the Superannuation Act 1972 (kinds of employment to which a scheme under section 1 of the Act may apply), at the end of the list of “Royal Commissions and other Commissions” insert— “House of Lords Appointments Commission.”

Delegation to staff

14 (1) The Commission may delegate functions to any of the Commission’s staff, other than the functions listed in paragraph 9(5).

(2) A committee or sub-committee may delegate functions (including functions delegated to it) to any of the Commission’s staff.

(3) A Commissioner may delegate functions (including functions delegated to the Commissioner) to any of the Commission’s staff.

(4) The chief executive may delegate functions (including functions delegated to the chief executive) to any of the Commission’s staff.

Delegation and contracting out of superannuation functions

15 (1) Section 1(2) of the Superannuation Act 1972 (delegation of functions relating to civil service superannuation schemes by Minister for the Civil Service to another officer of the Crown etc.) has effect as if the reference to an officer of Commission’s chief executive.

(2) Any administration function conferred on the chief executive under section 1(2) of that Act (in accordance with sub-paragraph (1)) may be carried out by, or by employees of, any person authorised by the chief executive.

(3) “Administration function” means a function of administering schemes made under section 1 of that Act, and from time to time in force.

(4) Under sub-paragraph (2) the chief executive may authorise a person to carry out administration functions—

(a) to their full extent or to a specified extent;

(b) in all cases or in specified cases;

(c) unconditionally or subject to specified conditions.

(5) An authorisation under sub-paragraph (2)—

(a) is to be treated for all purposes as given by virtue of an order under section 69 of the Deregulation and Contracting Out Act 1994 (contracting out of functions of Ministers and office-holders);

(b) may be revoked at any time by the Commission or the chief executive.

Status

16 (1) The Commission, its members and its staff are not to be regarded—

(a) as the servants or agents of the Crown, or

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

(2) The Commission’s property is not to be regarded as property of, or property held on behalf of, the Crown.

Funding

17 (1) The Commission’s expenditure is to be paid out of money provided by Parliament.

(2) For each financial year other than its first, the Commission must prepare an estimate of the Commission’s use of resources and submit it to the Joint Committee.

(3) The Joint Committee must review the estimate and decide whether it is satisfied that the estimate is consistent with the efficient and cost-effective discharge by the Commission of its functions.

(4) If not so satisfied, the Joint Committee must make such modifications to the estimate as it considers necessary for achieving that consistency.

(5) Before deciding whether it is satisfied or making modifications, the Joint Committee must consult the Treasury and have regard to any advice given.

(6) After the Joint Committee has reviewed the estimate and made any modifications, the person who chairs the Joint Committee must lay the estimate before the House of Commons.

(7) If the Joint Committee does not follow any advice given by the Treasury, or makes any modifications to the estimate, it must prepare a statement of it’s the statement before the House of Commons.

Accounts and accounting officer

18 (1) The Commission must keep proper accounting records.

(2) The Commission must, for each financial year, prepare accounts in accordance with directions given to it by the Treasury.

(3) The Treasury may in particular give the Commission directions as to—

(a) the information to be contained in the accounts and how it is to be presented,

(b) the methods and principles in accordance with which the accounts are to be prepared, and

(c) any additional information that is to accompany the accounts.

(4) The Commission’s chief executive is to be its accounting officer.

Audit

19 (1) As soon as reasonably practicable after the end of each financial year the Commission must submit its accounts for that year to the Comptroller and Auditor General and to the Joint Committee.

(2) The Comptroller and Auditor General must—

(a) examine and certify the accounts submitted under this paragraph, and

(b) lay before each House of Parliament a copy of the certificate and the accounts together with the report on them.

Reports

20 (1) As soon as reasonably practicable after the end of each financial year the Commission must prepare a report about the performance of its functions during that year.

(2) The person who chairs the Joint Committee must lay the report before each House of Parliament.

(3) When the report has been laid before each House the Commission must publish it.

Documentary evidence

21 (1) A document purporting to be duly executed under the seal of the Commission or signed on its behalf—

(a) is to be received in evidence, and

(b) unless the contrary is proved, is to be taken to be executed or signed in that way.

(2) This paragraph does not extend to Scotland.

Disqualification

22 (1) In Part 2 of Schedule 1 to the House of Commons Disqualification Act 1975 (bodies of which all members are disqualified), at the appropriate place insert— “The House of Lords Appointments Commission.”

(2) In Part 2 of Schedule 1 to the Northern Ireland Assembly Disqualification Act 1975 (bodies of which all members are disqualified), at the appropriate place insert— “The House of Lords Appointments Commission.”

Freedom of information

23 In Part 6 of Schedule 1 to the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (other public bodies and offices which are public authorities), the entry for “The House of Lords Appointments Commission” is to be treated as a reference to the Commission.

Public records

24 In Schedule 1 to the Public Records Act 1958 (definition of public records) at the appropriate place in Part 2 of the Table at the end of paragraph 3 insert— “The House of Lords Appointments Commission.”

Interpretation

25 In this Schedule “financial year” means—

(a) the period beginning with the day on which the Commission is established and ending with the next following 31 March, and

(b) each successive period of 12 months.”

THE EARL OF CAITHNESS

[As an amendment to the first amendment to after Clause 19 in the name of the Earl of Caithness]

 

Line 19, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 37, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 64, leave out “remuneration”

 

Leave out line 65

 

Line 66, leave out “payment or”

 

Line 78, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 80, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 107, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 117, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 118, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 120, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 178, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Line 179, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “the committee”

 

Line 185, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “the committee”

 

Line 187, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “the committee”

 

Line 188, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “the committee”

 

Line 190, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “the committee”

 

Line 207, leave out “the Joint Committee” and insert “an appropriate committee of the House of Lords”

 

Leave out lines 217 to 220

THE EARL OF CAITHNESS

 

Insert the following new Schedule—

“SCHEDULE The Joint Committee on the House of Lords Appointments Commission Members

1 (1) The Joint Committee is to consist of the following—

(a) a Minister of the Crown with responsibilities in relation to constitutional matters who is a member of the House of Commons;

(b) four members of the House of Lords who are not Ministers of the Crown;

(c) four members of the House of Commons who are not Ministers of the Crown;

(d) the person who chairs the relevant committee of the House of Lords;

(e) the person who chairs the relevant committee of the House of Commons.

(2) Members of the Joint Committee are to be appointed—

(a) for the purposes of sub-paragraph (1)(a) by the Prime Minister,

(b) for the purposes of sub-paragraph (1)(b) by the House of Lords, and

(c) for the purposes of sub-paragraph (1)(c) by the House of Commons.

(3) The Joint Committee is to select one of its members to chair it.

(4) For the purposes of sub-paragraph (1)(d) and (e), the relevant committee of the House of Lords or the House of Commons is the committee of that House concerned with constitutional matters, so far as relating to membership of the House of Lords.

(5) Any question arising under sub-paragraph (4) is to be determined by the Speaker of the House in question.

Terms of office of members

2 (1) In this paragraph “appointed member of the Joint Committee” means a member appointed under paragraph 1(2).

(2) Except as provided by this paragraph, an appointed member of the Joint Committee is a member of the Joint Committee for the remainder of the Parliament in which the person is appointed.

(3) If an appointed member of the Joint Committee who is a member of the House of Lords ceases to be a member of that House, that person ceases to be member of the Joint Committee.

(4) If an appointed member of the Joint Committee who is a member of the House of Commons ceases to be a member of that House, that person ceases to be a member of the Joint Committee.

(5) If an appointed member of the Joint Committee within paragraph 1(1)(b) or (c) becomes a Minister of the Crown, that person ceases to be a member of the Joint Committee.

(6) An appointed member of the Joint Committee ceases to be a member of the Joint Committee if another person is appointed in that person’s place.

(7) An appointed member of the Joint Committee may resign from the Joint Committee by notifying the Committee of the resignation.

(8) An appointed member of the Joint Committee may be reappointed (more than once).

Procedure

3 (1) The Joint Committee may establish sub-committees.

(2) The validity of proceedings of the Joint Committee or a sub-committee is not affected by—

(a) a vacancy among its members, or

(b) a defect in the appointment of a member.”

Prepared 14th September 2011