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Lord Whitty: It may assist both the noble Baroness and the noble Lord if I relate Clause 28 to Section 111 of the Local Government Act 1972, with which they may be more familiar. That section provides that an authority,

We have said all along--we have heard arguments against it--that the GLA will be subject to the local government financial regime. Although by the deletion of that clause the amendment will not explicitly give wider revenue-raising powers to the GLA, by implication it casts doubt on or undermines the GLA's duty to comply with the local government finance regime. We have made it clear on a number of occasions that that is not our intention.

That is the genesis and intention of the clause. Were the second subsection to be deleted, we believe that that would undermine and cast doubt on whether the GLA was bound by similar restrictions to other local authorities. I hope that with that explanation, the noble Baroness will withdraw the amendment.

Lord Bowness: If that is the safeguard that the Government seek to achieve, why is it not stated that that section of the Local Government Act applies to the authority?

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My concern does not relate so much to subsection (2), but to what the authority can do. The limitations which flow from Section 111 are not necessarily to be read into this clause as it stands.

Lord Whitty: The powers in subsection (1) make it explicit that the authority, as with other local authorities, under the Local Government Act can undertake certain functions as long as they have a demonstrable relationship to its express functions. They cannot undertake anything outside that. There is some degree of flexibility, but still limitation. As regards the GLA, that includes the general power. I do not know whether that clarifies the position.

Lord Bowness: The explanation has made the position worse. Clause 25(1) enables the authority to do almost anything. Clause 25(2) is fairly wide. By implication, it suggests that the authority will be able to do almost anything anywhere to achieve those aims and objectives. I fail to see what limit there is. Indeed, the specific limits which we discussed under Clause 26 do not seem to apply to this. We have to rely on the Government's assurance that this is meant to be a reiteration of Section 111 and interpreted accordingly. With respect, it does not seem to say that.

Lord Whitty: As with other subsections between Clause 25(1) and this subsection, this provision modifies, clarifies or puts limits on Clause 25(1). This subsection makes it clear that we are treating the powers and finances of the GLA in the same way as with other local authorities, reflecting more or less the wording of other local authority legislation. It is no more sinister than that.

Baroness Hamwee: We shall read carefully what the Minister said. Perhaps I am the only Member of the Committee who, although familiar with Section 111, does not read it every night before going to bed. I shall read it with this clause. I am not sure that the Minister has answered my point. However, I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Clause 28 agreed to.

Clause 29 [Authority functions to be exercisable by Mayor, Assembly or both]:

[Amendment No. 98 had been withdrawn from the Marshalled List.]

Baroness Miller of Hendon moved Amendment No. 98A:

Page 17, line 9, leave out paragraphs (b) and (c)

The noble Baroness said: Clause 29(1) gives power for any of the functions of the authority to be exercisable by the mayor alone acting on behalf of the authority, the assembly alone, or the mayor and assembly jointly. The amendment is very simply explained. We want the authority's powers to be exercisable by the mayor alone. Deletion of paragraphs (b) and (c) would mean that the mayor, acting on behalf of the assembly, would be

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required to work together with the assembly. It would impose upon them a requirement of co-operation and would effectively prevent the assembly from taking any action which is counter to that proposed by the mayor, who will have been directly elected by popular vote on his own mandate.

The intention in creating the office was that the mayor should be an all-powerful executive and that the assembly should provide the necessary checks, balances and scrutiny. We cannot have the authority interfering with the mayor's functions or the strategies that he formulates. By leaving in "only by the mayor acting on behalf of the authority", as we propose, this emphasises our belief in the co-operation between the two and the division between the executive and the legislature. I spoke about this matter when we discussed whether the deputy mayor should come from the assembly or be elected. I beg to move.

Lord Tope: I shall be equally brief because the amendment reflects the long-held difference of view between ourselves and the other Opposition Party. We still believe that the mayor should come from the assembly and be more accountable to the assembly. It follows from that that we therefore strongly oppose the amendment. We share the view of the noble Baroness that the mayor and the assembly should work co-operatively, and I believe that that will mostly be the case. However, I am astonished that the Conservative Party wishes to remove any powers at all from the assembly, given that there will be a mayor and assembly, and there is just a possibility that there will be some Conservative members on the assembly. I am surprised, even given its position, that it should wish to reinforce it in this way: it is diametrically opposite to our view and we cannot therefore support the amendment.

Lord Whitty: We are all agreed that the mayor and the assembly should operate co-operatively, but some differentiation in function is necessary. The Bill provides for the majority of the authority's functions to be executive functions to be exercised by the mayor, and that is entirely in accord with our vision of how the authority would work and the democratic mandate of the mayor. The assembly also has a democratic mandate, and it is right that the assembly rather than the mayor should exercise certain functions on behalf of the authority. For example, the assembly, after consulting the mayor, is responsible for the appointment of permanent staff to the authority. It is important to distinguish that staff from the personal appointments of the mayor.

Other functions flow directly from the assembly's scrutiny role. It would be a nonsense if, for example, the assembly's power to summon, which is specifically intended to enable the assembly to hold the mayor to account, were to be exercisable by the mayor alone. That is not a sensible outcome. There are other instances where perhaps the mayor and the assembly could jointly have responsibility, for example the holding of people's question time, because they are both accountable to the people of London. However, in general there needs to

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be some differentiation in function. We do not therefore think that the mayor should take over all the functions of the authority, as implied in the amendment.

Baroness Miller of Hendon: I am sure that the Minister would not expect me to accept his explanation, although I understand why he gave it in the terms that he did. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Clause 29 agreed to.

[Amendment No. 99 not moved.]

Clause 30 agreed to.

10.15 p.m.

Schedule 4 agreed to.

Clause 31 [Delegation]:

Baroness Hamwee moved Amendment No. 100:

Page 18, line 11, at end insert--
("( ) the Assembly;")

The noble Baroness said: In moving Amendment No. 100, I shall speak also to Amendments Nos. 101 and 102. Clause 31 provides that the mayor can delegate to named individuals and bodies, or to a mixture, including any member of the authority. Amendment No. 100 seeks to allow the mayor also to delegate to the assembly. In tabling the amendment, I am again emphasising the assembly's lack of executive power. I have tabled the amendment to suggest that there may be certain tasks which the assembly could appropriately carry out, even with the divisions of responsibilities as the Bill provides. For instance, some of the consultation exercises could well be undertaken by the assembly.

If the Committee is puzzled as to why Amendments Nos. 101 and 102 appear on the Marshalled List, I am puzzled too. I queried whether I should be using the singular or plural in this context. I am aware that the Government are syntactically plural, but a singular body. I apologise for the confusion, because only one amendment should have been tabled. I do not mind which.

The point of the amendment is to probe whether delegation can be imposed by the mayor without the agreement of the bodies referred to. I beg to move.

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