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Lord Hughes: The principle in the Bill seems a reasonable one. Because it is a reasonable one, why should we not expect the Scottish parliament to act in that reasonable way if it is left to do so? The point being made is that we are in an anomalous position. On the one hand we are saying that the parliament must be trusted to decide its own salaries; but on the other we must say no, we are not sure that they will do it right.

Having said that, I do not know that any Member of the House of Commons is also a member of the European Parliament, except those from Northern Ireland. Members from Northern Ireland are also members of the European Parliament. Does this principle apply to them? Do Dr. Paisley and Mr. Hume draw both salaries and are they diminished in any way?

Lord Hardie: I must advise my noble friend Lord Hughes that I do not know the answer to his query. Perhaps I can write to my noble friend to give him chapter and verse of the position. I am aware that another Member of the other place is also a member of the European Parliament. She is also a member of the Faculty of Advocates and represents a constituency in the south of England.

Lord Mackay of Ardbrecknish: Perhaps I can help the noble and learned Lord the Lord Advocate. In return

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for my help he will receive my bill in the morning. If I am paid by the minute for this Bill, the Committee will forgive me if I go on a bit. As I understand it, Members of the European Parliament and of the House of Commons are paid only one salary. As I have said, I have no problem with the principle.

My noble friend has raised an interesting matter as regards those candidates in the election to the Scottish parliament who find themselves opposing Members of the other place. The latter will be able to fight an election for the Scottish parliament on the basis of the taxpayers' payments to them for being Members of the other place. I rather suspect that their attendance there will be pretty sparse while they fight for their seats in the Scottish parliament. I believe that my noble friend has a point about the injustice of that situation.

But the injustice goes beyond that. I agree with the noble Lord, Lord Hughes: if I am told that my amendments to Clause 76 are a bit of a cheek because I should leave the matter to the good sense of the Scottish parliament, then I believe that the question of abating the salaries of dual Members should also be left to the Scottish parliament. Obviously, consistency does not run firmly through the Government's position on this Bill.

Again, we had no indication of any kind of ball park figure. I did not get an answer as to whether 99 per cent. would be a proportion, as it certainly would be. We had no answer as to what the Government believe would be roughly acceptable. That is totally inadequate. In fact, if it were not for the time of night I would be tempted, but I shall resist it. I may return to the matter and suggest to the Committee that this clause in its entirety should be removed from the Bill because these matters should be left to the parliament itself. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

[Amendment No. 288ZD not moved.]

Clause 77 agreed to.

Clause 78 [Remuneration: supplementary]:

[Amendments Nos. 288A and 288AA not moved.]

Clause 78 agreed to.

Clause 79 [Oaths]:

[Amendment No. 288AB not moved.]

Clause 79 agreed to.

Clause 80 [Exemption from jury service]:

The Earl of Mar and Kellie moved Amendment No. 288B:

Page 38, leave out line 34.

The noble Earl said: Amendments Nos. 288B to 288D are focused on Clause 80 which deals with exemption from jury service. Perhaps I may say to the Committee that I can read the Marshalled List and the runes so I shall not go on about this set of amendments for very long. Amendment No. 288B seeks to remove junior Scottish Ministers from the list on the grounds that their position is already covered in the preceding description as members of the Scottish parliament.

Amendment No. 288BA seeks to add the new post of the Auditor General for Scotland to the list of those exempted from jury service. Given the need for effective

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accounting, I cannot see that that will be anything other than hindered by the possibility of a lengthy absence by the Auditor General for Scotland on jury service. I beg to move.

Baroness Ramsay of Cartvale: It may be helpful if at this point I say to the Committee that I intend to oppose the Question that Clause 80 stand part of the Bill. I shall explain my reason for doing so. It arises out of further consideration, prompted by these amendments, of the need for the clause. I realise that it is not often that I or any of my noble friends on the Front Bench have to oppose parts of this Bill. However, I suggest that this is evidence--should Members of the Committee require any--that we really do listen to what happens in the House and that the Government are prepared to consider amendments and all their implications.

We have considered whether it is necessary to provide for exemptions from jury service on the face of the Bill. We have concluded that it is not and that it would be more appropriate to make the necessary amendments to the Juries Act 1974 and the Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Scotland) Act 1980, as well as the juries legislation in Northern Ireland in an order under Clause 96 of the Bill. If your Lordships agree to the deletion of Clause 80 we would intend to make the same amendments as are currently set out in Clause 80 under Clause 96. We would also give consideration as to whether further exemptions should be provided in consequence of the establishment of other new offices by the Bill.

An order under Clause 96 making the provision I have described would be laid before your Lordships' House, as well as the other place, in due course, assuming Clause 96 is duly enacted.

The parliament will have legislative competence in relation to jury service in Scotland and will be able to provide further exemptions if it sees fit.

In case your Lordships do not agree to leave out this clause, I should explain what the Government's position is on the noble Earl's amendments. As the noble Earl explained, these amendments raise his concerns about whether Clause 80 makes the appropriate exemptions from jury service. I understand that the noble Earl does not think it necessary to have a specific exemption for junior Scottish ministers since they should be covered by the general exemption for all members of the Scottish parliament. There was a good reason for this specific exemption. Junior Scottish ministers, like the members of the Scottish executive, could continue to hold office during a dissolution of the parliament until a new administration is formed. At that point they would not be MSPs. We think it is right that they should continue to be entitled as of right to be excused jury service in those circumstances.

Amendments Nos. 288BA and 288D probe why the Auditor General is not exempted from jury service as of right. We have listened carefully to the noble Earl's arguments and will consider his points. We thought that it was more appropriate to leave the parliament to

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consider whether the Auditor General needed to be exempt. The parliament will have to legislate anyway to enable the Auditor General to exercise his functions. But I shall consider the points that the noble Earl has made as to why we should make provision. The parliament will, of course, be able to make further provision about exemptions from jury service.

Lord Mackay of Drumadoon: I had not intended to intervene on this amendment, but in view of the Minister's helpful explanation of her reasons for opposing the Question that the clause stand part of the Bill, it might be helpful if I say a few words at this juncture.

I do not welcome, yet again, an attempt to put as little on the face of the Bill as possible and the further use of an order-making power to amend primary legislation. If Parliament, in its wisdom, in 1974, in the Juries Act of that year, and again in 1980 in the Law Reform (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Scotland) Act, set out provisions as to who was or was not excusable from jury service, such legislation (being primary legislation) should, in the absence of very good reason, be amended by primary legislation. Clearly, that was the Government's intention when Clause 80 was framed by the draftsmen when the Bill was debated in another place. It is somewhat disingenuous that only the amendments tabled by the noble Earl, Lord Mar and Kellie, have prompted a change at this stage. It seems to me that there is nothing wrong with the clause in its present form. It amends, by means of primary legislation, two Acts of Parliament. For that reason, I do not welcome the Government's intention to oppose part of the Bill, even as an example of a listening government.

Lord Rodger of Earlsferry: As the Government have given a great deal of thought to opposing the Question that the clause stand part of the Bill, it may appear slightly ungrateful to say that it would appear to me that there cannot be any doubt that one would wish to have exemption from jury service for the people specified in the clause. Therefore, even if it is intended to use the wide order-making powers under the clause to which reference has been made to add to the list of people who are exempted, I cannot see why it is desired to remove a clause that makes exemptions which, on any view, must be necessary. Otherwise, it appears to me that there will be a hiatus. Unless the Scottish parliament makes its very first Act the passing of subordinate legislation dealing with jury service of these ladies and gentlemen who are specified here, there will be a hiatus. Those people would actually be eligible for jury service and would, therefore, be liable to be summoned with all the complications that would follow from it.

It seems to me that the clause as it stands is a sensible one and one that perhaps could be added to later if the Scottish parliament so desired. However, to remove it would create an unfortunate hiatus. Therefore, I ask the Government to reconsider the matter.

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9.30 p.m.

Baroness Ramsay of Cartvale: I believe that we could have this debate when we come to discuss Clause 96. For the reasons that I went into at some length--indeed, at greater length than I thought Members of the Committee would wish, but clearly it was not enough--we have decided that this is not the way forward in this case. We would prefer to do it under Clause 96. In any event, it is within the competence of the parliament. There is no hiatus because a Clause 96 order will be made before the MSPs come into office. Therefore, there is no such hiatus.

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