Local Government Bill [H.L.] - continued        House of Lords
PART II, ARRANGEMENTS WITH RESPECT TO EXECUTIVES - continued
Procedure with respect to operation of executive arrangements - continued

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Referendum in case of proposals involving elected mayor.     25. - (1) Where a local authority's proposals under section 23 involve a form of executive for which a referendum is required, the authority-
 
 
    (a) must hold a referendum on their proposals before taking any steps to implement them, and
 
    (b) must draw up and send to the Secretary of State an outline of the fall-back proposals (referred to in this section as outline fall-back proposals) that they intend to implement if the proposals under section 23 are rejected in a referendum.
      (2) Fall-back proposals are proposals-
 
 
    (a) for the operation of executive arrangements which do not involve a form of executive for which a referendum is required, or
 
    (b) for the operation of alternative arrangements (within the meaning of section 28).
      (3) In drawing up outline fall-back proposals, a local authority must take reasonable steps to consult local government electors, and other interested persons, in the authority's area.
 
      (4) Outline fall-back proposals must include a timetable with respect to the implementation of detailed fall-back proposals which are based on the outline fall-back proposals in the event that the proposals under section 23 are rejected in a referendum.
 
      (5) A local authority must send a copy of their outline fall-back proposals to the Secretary of State at the same time that a copy of the proposals under section 23 is sent to him.
 
      (6) A local authority may not hold a referendum under this section before the end of the period of two months beginning with the date on which a copy of the proposals under section 23 is sent to the Secretary of State.
 
      (7) If the result of a referendum under subsection (1) is to approve a local authority's proposals under section 23, the authority must implement the proposals in accordance with the timetable included in the proposals.
 
      (8) If the result of a referendum under subsection (1) is to reject a local authority's proposals under section 23, the authority-
 
 
    (a) may not implement those proposals,
 
    (b) must draw up detailed fall-back proposals which are based on the outline fall-back proposals, and
 
    (c) must send a copy of the detailed fall-back proposals to the Secretary of State.
      (9) In drawing up outline fall-back proposals or detailed fall-back proposals under this section, a local authority must comply with any directions given by the Secretary of State.
 
      (10) Outline fall-back proposals and detailed fall-back proposals must include such details of the executive arrangements or alternative arrangements to which they relate as the Secretary of State may direct.
 
      (11) Subsections (2)(b), (3)(a) and (4)(c) of section 23 are to apply to detailed fall-back proposals involving executive arrangements as they apply to proposals under that section.
 
      (12) Subsections (3)(a) and (4)(c) of that section are to apply to detailed fall-back proposals involving alternative arrangements as they apply to proposals under that section.
 
      (13) A local authority must implement detailed fall-back proposals in accordance with the timetable mentioned in subsection (4).
 
Operation of, and publicity for, executive arrangements.     26. - (1) A resolution of a local authority is required in order for the authority to operate executive arrangements.
 
      (2) As soon as practicable after passing such a resolution a local authority must-
 
 
    (a) secure that copies of a document setting out the provisions of the arrangements are available at their principal office for inspection by members of the public at all reasonable hours, and
 
    (b) publish in one or more newspapers circulating in their area a notice which-
 
      (i) states that they have resolved to operate the arrangements,
 
      (ii) states the date on which they are to begin operating the arrangements,
 
      (iii) describes the main features of the arrangements,
 
      (iv) states that copies of a document setting out the provisions of the arrangements are available at their principal office for inspection by members of the public at such times as may be specified in the notice, and
 
      (v) specifies the address of their principal office.
      (3) A local authority which pass a resolution under this section may not at any subsequent time cease to operate executive arrangements.
 
 
Different and alternative arrangements
Operation of different executive arrangements.     27. - (1) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision for or in connection with enabling a local authority which are operating executive arrangements ("the existing arrangements") to operate executive arrangements ("the different arrangements") which differ from the existing arrangements in any respect.
 
      (2) The provision which may be made by virtue of subsection (1) includes provision-
 
 
    (a) which applies or reproduces (with or without modifications) any provisions of section 23, 24, 25 or 26,
 
    (b) for or in connection with requiring the consent of an elected mayor under the existing arrangements to the operation of the different arrangements,
 
    (c) with respect to changes to the existing arrangements as a result of changes to the functions which are the responsibility of an executive.
      (3) Nothing in subsection (2) affects the generality of the power under subsection (1).
 
Alternative arrangements.     28. - (1) The Secretary of State may by regulations specify arrangements by a local authority with respect to the discharge of their functions (referred to in this Part as alternative arrangements) which are arrangements of a type-
 
 
    (a) which the Secretary of State considers are likely to ensure that decisions of the authority are taken in an efficient and accountable way, and
 
    (b) which are not permitted by or under section 101 of the Local Government Act 1972 or sections 15 to 17 of, and Schedule 1 to, the Local Government and Housing Act 1989.
      (2) The arrangements which may be specified by regulations under this section include-
 
 
    (a) arrangements for the discharge of functions of a local authority by individual members of the authority or by individual members of any committee or sub-committee of the authority,
 
    (b) arrangements for the appointment of committees or sub-committees of a local authority the membership of which is determined otherwise than in accordance with the political balance requirements,
 
    (c) arrangements for the appointment of committees or sub-committees of a local authority to review or scrutinise decisions made, or other action taken, in connection with the discharge of functions of the authority.
      (3) Regulations under this section may make provision for the purpose of determining the functions of a local authority which may, may not or must be the subject of alternative arrangements of any particular type.
 
      (4) Nothing in subsection (2) or (3) affects the generality of the power under subsection (1).
 
Operation of alternative arrangements.     29. - (1) A resolution of a local authority is required in order for the authority to operate alternative arrangements.
 
      (2) Subsection (2) of section 26 is to apply for the purposes of this section as it applies for the purposes of that section.
 
      (3) A local authority which pass a resolution under this section to operate alternative arrangements may not at any subsequent time cease to operate those arrangements unless, by virtue of any provision made under subsection (5) or section 30, 31 or 32, the authority operate executive arrangements in place of those arrangements.
 
      (4) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision for or in connection with enabling a local authority which is operating alternative arrangements to alter those arrangements in such ways as may be permitted by the regulations.
 
      (5) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision for or in connection with enabling a local authority which is operating alternative arrangements to operate executive arrangements in place of the alternative arrangements.
 
      (6) The provision which may be made by virtue of subsection (5) includes provision which applies or reproduces (with or without modifications) any provisions of section 23, 24, 25 or 26.
 
      (7) Nothing in subsection (6) affects the generality of the power under subsection (5).
 
 
Referendums
Referendum following petition.     30. - (1) The Secretary of State may by regulations make provision for or in connection with requiring a local authority which receives a petition which complies with the provisions of the regulations to hold a referendum, in such circumstances as may be prescribed in the regulations, on whether the authority should operate executive arrangements involving a form of executive for which a referendum is required.
 
      (2) The provision which may be made by regulations under subsection (1) includes provision-
 
 
    (a) as to the form and content of petitions (including provision for petitions in electronic form),
 
    (b) as to the minimum number of local government electors for a local authority's area who must support any petition presented to the authority during any period specified in the regulations,
 
    (c) for or in connection with requiring the proper officer of a local authority to publish the number of local government electors for the authority's area who must support any petition presented to the authority,
 
    (d) as to the way in which local government electors for a local authority's area are to support a petition (including provision enabling local government electors to support petitions by telephone or by electronic means),
 
    (e) as to the action which may, may not or must be taken by a local authority in connection with any petition,
 
    (f) as to the manner in which a petition is to be presented to a local authority,
 
    (g) as to the verification of any petition,
 
    (h) as to the date on which, or the time by which, a referendum must be held,
 
    (i) as to the action which may, may not or must be taken by a local authority before or in connection with a referendum,
 
    (j) as to the action which may, may not or must be taken by a local authority after a referendum, and
 
    (k) for or in connection with enabling the Secretary of State, in the event of any failure by a local authority to take any action permitted or required by virtue of the regulations, to take that action.
      (3) The provision which may be made by virtue of subsection (2) includes provision which applies or reproduces (with or without modifications) any provisions of sections 23, 25, 26 or 29.
 
      (4) The number of local government electors mentioned in subsection (2)(b) is to be calculated at such times as may be provided by regulations under this section and must not exceed 5 per cent. of the number of local government electors at any of those times.
 
      (5) Nothing in subsection (2), (3) or (4) affects the generality of the power under subsection (1).
 
 
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