I am writing in response to the Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Committee’s Twenty-Fifth Report (published on 14 October), where it has considered the delegated power in clause 2 of the Fire Safety Bill.
The Government has considered very carefully the Committee’s report. We note the Committee has asked for an explanation as to whether there may be a need to remove a type of premises from the Fire Safety Order in future and, if not, to narrow the wording of the delegated power on clause 2.
As set out in the Delegated Powers Memorandum, the Government considers that this power is necessary to reflect the most up to date evidence of fire safety risks. It is very difficult to predict what these risks might be and how they may occur, for example from new materials or new methods of construction.
However, we do envisage some scenarios where the power to remove might be required in future, for example:
It is the Government’s view that these powers are justified and necessary in this context and the Government has been transparent in communications with stakeholders and with Parliament about its potential use.
I am copying this letter to members of the Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Committee, and to the Rt Hon James Brokenshire MP, Bill Minister in the Commons.
I am also copying this letter to Lord Rosser, Lord Kennedy, Lord Paddick, Baroness Pinnock and Lord Judge.
A copy of this letter will be placed in the libraries of both Houses.
12 November 2020