Local Government Bill [H.L.] - continued        House of Lords

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SCHEDULE 3
 
  STANDARDS BOARDS
 
Status
     1. - (1) Neither of the Standards Boards is to be regarded as the servant or agent of the Crown or as enjoying any status, immunity or privilege of the Crown.
 
      (2) The members and employees of each of the Standards Boards are not to be regarded as civil servants and the property of each Board is not be regarded as property of, or held on behalf of, the Crown.
 
 
General powers
     2. - (1) Each of the Standards Boards may do such things and enter into such transactions as are calculated to facilitate, or are incidental or conducive to, the exercise of-
 
 
    (a) the functions of the Board, and
 
    (b) the functions of its ethical standards officers.
      (2) The power under sub-paragraph (1) includes power to acquire and dispose of land.
 
      (3) Nothing in sub-paragraph (2) affects the generality of the power under sub-paragraph (1).
 
 
Disqualifications
     3. - (1) A person is to be disqualified for being appointed as, or for being, a member of a Standards Board if he is disqualified for being elected, or being, a member of a local authority.
 
      (2) A person may not be employed as an ethical standards officer if-
 
 
    (a) he is disqualified for being elected, or being, a member of a local authority,
 
    (b) he is a member or an officer of a local authority, or
 
    (c) he is a member of a committee, sub-committee, joint committee or joint sub-committee of a local authority.
      (3) In this paragraph "local authority" has the meaning given by section 270(1) of the Local Government Act 1972.
 
 
Chairman and deputy chairman
     4. - (1) The Secretary of State must appoint one of the members of the Standards Board for England to be chairman and another to be deputy chairman.
 
      (2) The National Assembly for Wales must appoint one of the members of the Standards Board for Wales to be chairman and another to be deputy chairman.
 
 
Tenure of office
     5. - (1) Subject to the provisions of this paragraph, a person is to hold and vacate office as chairman, deputy chairman or member of either of the Standards Boards in accordance with the terms of his appointment.
 
      (2) A chairman, deputy chairman or member of the Standards Board for England may at any time resign his office by notice in writing addressed to the Secretary of State.
 
      (3) A chairman, deputy chairman or member of the Standards Board for Wales may at any time resign his office by notice in writing addressed to the National Assembly for Wales.
 
      (4) The Secretary of State may remove a chairman, deputy chairman or member of the Standards Board for England from office if the Secretary of State considers-
 
 
    (a) that that person is unable or unfit to discharge the functions of his office, or
 
    (b) that that person has not complied with the terms of his appointment.
      (5) The National Assembly for Wales may remove a chairman, deputy chairman or member of the Standards Board for Wales from office if it considers-
 
 
    (a) that he is unable or unfit to discharge the functions of his office, or
 
    (b) that he has not complied with the terms of his appointment.
      (6) If a chairman or deputy chairman of either of the Standards Boards ceases to be a member of that Board he is also to cease to be chairman or deputy chairman.
 
      (7) A person who ceases, otherwise than by virtue of sub-paragraph (4) or (5), to be a chairman, deputy chairman or member of either of the Standards Boards is to be eligible for re-appointment.
 
 
Employees
     6. - (1) Each of the Standards Boards may, in addition to appointing ethical standards officers, appoint such employees as it considers necessary for the purpose of enabling the Board and its ethical standards officers to exercise their functions.
 
      (2) The Standards Boards for England may also appoint such employees as it considers necessary for the purpose of enabling the president, deputy president and any tribunals of the Adjudication Panel for England to exercise their functions.
 
      (3) The Standards Boards for Wales may also appoint such employees as it considers necessary for the purpose of enabling the president, deputy president and any tribunals of the Adjudication Panel for Wales to exercise their functions.
 
      (4) No person employed by either of the Standards Boards is to be employed for the purposes of both-
 
 
    (a) enabling its ethical standards officers to exercise their functions, and
 
    (b) enabling the president, deputy president and any tribunals of the Adjudication Panel concerned to exercise their functions.
      (5) Subject to paragraph 7, employees of each of the Standards Boards are to be appointed on such terms and conditions of service as it thinks fit.
 
 
Remuneration etc.
     7. - (1) The Standards Board for England may pay to-
 
 
    (a) any member of the Board such remuneration or allowances (if any) as the Secretary of State may determine,
 
    (b) any employee of the Board such remuneration or allowances as the Secretary of State may determine.
      (2) The Standards Board for Wales may pay to-
 
 
    (a) any member of the Board such remuneration or allowances (if any) as the National Assembly for Wales may determine,
 
    (b) any employee of the Board such remuneration or allowances as the National Assembly for Wales may determine.
      (3) The Standards Board for England may-
 
 
    (a) pay such pensions, allowances or gratuities as the Secretary of State may determine to or in respect of any persons who have been or are members or employees of the Board,
 
    (b) make such payments as the Secretary of State may determine towards the provision of pensions, allowances or gratuities to or in respect of any such persons,
 
    (c) provide and maintain such schemes (whether contributory or not) as the Secretary of State may determine for the payment of pensions, allowances or gratuities to or in respect of any such persons.
      (4) The Standards Board for Wales may-
 
 
    (a) pay such pensions, allowances or gratuities as the National Assembly for Wales may determine to or in respect of any persons who have been or are members or employees of the Board,
 
    (b) make such payments as the Assembly may determine towards the provision of pensions, allowances or gratuities to or in respect of any such persons, and
 
    (c) provide and maintain such schemes (whether contributory or not) as the Assembly may determine for the payment of pensions, allowances or gratuities to or in respect of any such persons.
      (5) Any reference in sub-paragraph (3) or (4) to pensions, allowances or gratuities to or in respect of any persons who have been or are members or employees of the Board includes pensions, allowances or gratuities by way of compensation to or in respect of any members or employees of the Standards Board concerned who cease to hold office or suffer loss of office or employment.
 
 
Proceedings
     8. - (1) Each of the Standards Boards may regulate its own procedure (and in particular may specify a quorum for meetings).
 
      (2) The validity of any proceedings of each of the Standards Boards is not to be affected-
 
 
    (a) by any vacancy among its members or in the office of chairman or deputy chairman,
 
    (b) by any defect in the appointment of any person as chairman, deputy chairman or member, or
 
    (c) by a contravention of paragraph 3 or 9.
 
Members' interests
     9. - (1) A member of either of the Standards Boards who is directly or indirectly interested in any matter brought up for consideration at a meeting of the Board-
 
 
    (a) must disclose the nature of his interest to the meeting, and
 
    (b) must not take part in any deliberation or decision of the Board with respect to that matter.
      (2) A member is taken to be interested under sub-paragraph (1), in particular, where the matter being considered is a failure to comply with the code of conduct of a relevant authority and he is, or has been-
 
 
    (a) a member or officer of that authority, or
 
    (b) a member of a committee, sub-committee, joint committee or joint sub-committee of that authority.
 
Finance
     10. - (1) The Secretary of State must pay to the Standards Board for England in respect of each financial year such amount as he determines to be the amount required-
 
 
    (a) for the performance during that year of the functions of the Board, and
 
    (b) for the performance during that year of the functions of its ethical standards officers.
      (2) The National Assembly for Wales must pay to the Standards Board for Wales in respect of each financial year such amount as it determines to be the amount required-
 
 
    (a) for the performance during that year of the functions of the Board, and
 
    (b) for the performance during that year of the functions of its ethical standards officers.
      (3) Any determination under sub-paragraph (1) requires the approval of the Treasury.
 
      (4) In this paragraph "financial year" means-
 
 
    (a) the period beginning with the date on which the Standards Board concerned is established and ending with the next 31st March following that date, and
 
    (b) each successive period of twelve months ending with 31st March.
 
Accounts
     11. - (1) The Standards Board for England must-
 
 
    (a) keep proper accounts and records in relation to the accounts, and
 
    (b) prepare in respect of each financial year a statement of accounts in such form as the Secretary of State may, with the approval of the Treasury, direct.
      (2) The accounts of the Standards Board for England must be audited by persons appointed for the purpose for each financial year by the Secretary of State.
 
      (3) A copy of any accounts of the Standards Board for England audited under sub-paragraph (2), and of the report made on those accounts by the persons appointed to audit them, must be sent to the Secretary of State as soon as reasonably practicable after the report is received by the Board.
 
      (4) The Secretary of State must lay before Parliament a copy of any accounts or report sent to him under sub-paragraph (3).
 
      (5) The Standards Board for Wales must-
 
 
    (a) keep proper accounts and records in relation to the accounts, and
 
    (b) prepare in respect of each financial year a statement of accounts in such form as the National Assembly for Wales may direct.
      (6) The accounts of the Standards Board for Wales must be audited by the Auditor General for Wales.
 
      (7) A copy of any accounts of the Standards Board for Wales audited under sub-paragraph (6), and of the report made on those accounts by the Auditor General for Wales, must be sent to the National Assembly for Wales as soon as reasonably practicable after the report is received by the Board.
 
      (8) In this paragraph "financial year" has the meaning given by paragraph 10(4).
 
 
Annual report
     12. - (1) As soon as possible after the end of each financial year each Standards Board must publish a report on the discharge of its functions during that year.
 
      (2) The Standards Board for England must send a copy of each annual report to the Secretary of State who must lay a copy of the report before each House of Parliament.
 
      (3) The Standards Board for Wales must send a copy of each annual report to the National Assembly for Wales.
 
      (4) In this paragraph "financial year" has the meaning given by paragraph 10(4).
 
 
Application of seal and evidence
     13. The application of the seal of each of the Standards Boards is to be authenticated by the signature-
 
 
    (a) of the chairman, or
 
    (b) of some other member who has been authorised by the Board (whether generally or specially) for that purpose.
     14. A document purporting to be duly executed under the seal of either of the Standards Boards or to be signed on its behalf may be received in evidence and, unless the contrary is proved, is to be taken to be so executed or signed.
 
 
Parliamentary disqualification
     15. - (1) In the House of Commons Disqualification Act 1975, in Part II of Schedule 1 (bodies of which all members are disqualified) the following entries are inserted at the appropriate place-
 
 
 
    " The Standards Board for England.
 
    The Standards Board for Wales."
      (2) The same entries are inserted at the appropriate place in Part II of Schedule 1 to the Northern Ireland Assembly Disqualification Act 1975.
 
 
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Prepared 8 February 2000