Transport Bill - continued        House of Lords
PART IV, RAILWAYS - continued
Closures - continued

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Closure of unnecessary track to be minor closure.     224. In section 39(10) of the Railways Act 1993 (proposals to close part of network used or previously used for or in connection with provision of services for carriage of passengers), in the definition of "minor closure", after paragraph (a) insert-
 
 
    "(aa) any part of a network which consists of a stretch of track, or installations associated with a stretch of track, doing no more than serve a station or light maintenance depot, or some part of it, where the circumstances are such that-
 
      (i) that part of the network is not necessary for the use of the station or light maintenance depot, or that part of it, for the purpose of or in connection with the provision of services for the carriage of passengers by railway; or
 
      (ii) the use of the station or light maintenance depot, or that part of it, has been or is proposed to be subject to termination constituting a minor closure within the meaning of section 41 below; or".
General determinations of minor closures.     225. In the Railways Act 1993, after section 46 insert-
 
 
"General determinations of minor closures.     46A. - (1) The Authority may make a general determination for the purposes of any or all of sections 37(1), 38(2), 39(1), 40(2), 41(1) and 42(2) above that closures of a particular class or description are minor closures.
 
    (2) Where the Authority makes or revokes a general determination under subsection (1) above, it shall-
 
 
    (a) give a copy of the determination or revocation to the Regulator; and
 
    (b) publish it in such manner as it considers appropriate.
      (3) The revocation of a general determination made under subsection (1) above shall not affect any closure if its status as a minor closure by virtue of the general determination has been relied on before the revocation as the ground for not giving a notice or for discontinuing any services or the operation of the whole or part of any network or facility."
 
Operator's duty to continue where closure should be permitted.     226. - (1) In section 37 of the Railways Act 1993 (closures of non-franchised passenger services)-
 
 
    (a) in subsections (1) and (3)(b), for "will" substitute "proposes to", and
 
    (b) in subsection (6), for the words following the paragraphs substitute "and the service operator shall not discontinue the services to which the proposed closure relates before the end of the interim period."
      (2) In section 39(7) of that Act (closures of operational passenger networks), for the words following the paragraphs substitute "and the operator shall not discontinue the operation of the network, or the part of the network, to which the proposed closure relates before the end of the interim period."
 
      (3) In section 41(6) of that Act (closures of railway facilities used in connection with passenger services), for the words following the paragraphs substitute "and the operator shall not terminate the use of the relevant facility, or the part of the relevant facility, to which the proposed closure relates before the end of the interim period."
 
      (4) In section 55(10) of that Act (enforcement), in the definition of "relevant condition or requirement", in paragraph (c)(i), for the words after "under" substitute "section 37(1) or (6), 39(1) or (7) or 41(1) or (6) above not to discontinue a railway passenger service or the operation of the whole or part of a network or not to terminate the use of the whole or part of a station or light maintenance depot; and".
 
 
The Board
Transfer of Board's property etc. to Secretary of State.     227. Schedule 25 makes provision for the transfer to the Secretary of State of property, rights and liabilities of the Board.
 
Winding down and abolition of Board.     228. - (1) Section 84 of the Railways Act 1993 (power of Board to form companies) shall apply as if facilitating the carrying into effect of, or of any provision made under, sections 205, 206 and 227 and Schedules 18, 19 and 25 were a purpose specified by the Secretary of State under subsection (1)(d) of that section; and section 85 of that Act (power of Board to make transfer schemes) shall apply as if that were a purpose specified in subsection (3)(b) of that section.
 
      (2) The Board shall give to the Authority any information, prepare any document and do any other thing which appears to the Authority appropriate for facilitating the carrying into effect of, or of any provision made under, sections 205, 206 and 227 and Schedules 18, 19 and 25.
 
      (3) The Secretary of State may-
 
 
    (a) by order made by statutory instrument reduce the membership of the Board to a chairman and one or more other persons appointed by the Secretary of State, and
 
    (b) by notice in writing remove from office any member of the Board or vary the terms of his appointment.
      (4) When, after consulting the Board, the Secretary of State considers that it is no longer necessary for the Board to continue to exist, he shall by order made by statutory instrument provide for its dissolution.
 
      (5) If a person ceases to hold office as chairman or a member of the Board by virtue of subsection (3)(b) or (4) before his term of office would otherwise have expired and the Secretary of State determines that there are special circumstances which make it right that the person should receive compensation-
 
 
    (a) if the person ceases to hold office by virtue of subsection (3)(b), the Board, and
 
    (b) if the person ceases to hold office by virtue of subsection (4), the Secretary of State,
       shall pay to the person such compensation as may be determined by the Secretary of State.
 
      (6) Where an order under subsection (4) provides for the Board to be dissolved with effect from a time which would not, apart from this subsection, be the end of its financial year, the financial year of the Board which is current at that time shall be deemed to end with its dissolution.
 
      (7) An order under subsection (4) which so provides may contain such provision as the Secretary of State considers appropriate (including provision modifying the effect of any enactment) for the Board or the Authority-
 
 
    (a) to prepare accounts for the final financial year of the Board, and
 
    (b) to make and lay before Parliament a report relating to the carrying out of the Board's functions during that financial year.
 
Competition
Licence modifications following Competition Commission report.     229. - (1) In section 15 of the Railways Act 1993 (modification of licence conditions following report of Competition Commission), after subsection (4) insert-
 
 
    "(4A) Where (after considering any representations or objections which are duly made and not withdrawn) the Regulator or Authority proposes to make or require the making of modifications under this section, he or it shall give notice to the Competition Commission-
 
 
    (a) setting out the modifications he proposes to make or it proposes to require to be made; and
 
    (b) stating the reasons why he proposes to make the modifications or it proposes to require the making of them.
      (4B) The Regulator or Authority shall include with the notice under subsection (4A) above a copy of any representations and objections which have been considered.
 
      (4C) If the period within which a direction may be given by the Competition Commission under section 15A below expires without such a direction being given, the Regulator or Authority shall make, or require the making of, the modifications set out in the notice given under subsection (4A) above.
 
      (4D) If a direction is given by the Competition Commission under section 15A(1)(b) below, the Regulator or Authority shall make, or require the making of, such of those modifications as are not specified in the direction."
 
      (2) After that section insert-
 
 
"Competition Commission's power to veto modifications following report.     15A. - (1) The Competition Commission may, within the period of four weeks beginning with the day on which they are given notice under section 15(4A) above, give a direction to the Regulator or Authority-
 
    (a) not to make, or require the making of, the modifications set out in the notice; or
 
    (b) not to make such of those modifications as are specified in the direction.
      (2) The Secretary of State may, if an application is made to him by the Competition Commission within that period of four weeks, extend the period within which a direction may be given under this section to one of six weeks beginning with the day on which the Competition Commission are given notice under section 15(4A) above.
 
      (3) The Competition Commission may give a direction under this section only if the modifications to which it relates do not appear to them requisite for the purpose of remedying or preventing the adverse effects specified in their report on the reference under section 13 above.
 
      (4) If the Competition Commission give a direction under this section, they shall give notice-
 
 
    (a) setting out the modifications contained in the notice given under section 15(4A) above;
 
    (b) setting out the direction; and
 
    (c) stating the reasons why they are giving the direction.
      (5) A notice under subsection (4) above shall be given-
 
 
    (a) by publishing the notice in such manner as the Competition Commission consider appropriate for the purpose of bringing the matters to which the notice relates to the attention of persons likely to be affected by the direction; and
 
    (b) by serving a copy of the notice on the holder of the licence.
Making of modifications by Competition Commission.     15B. - (1) If the Competition Commission give a direction under section 15A above, they may themselves make such modifications of the conditions of the licence as appear to them requisite for the purpose of remedying or preventing-
 
 
    (a) the adverse effects specified in their report on the reference under section 13 above; or
 
    (b) such of those adverse effects as would not be remedied or prevented by the modifications made by the Regulator, or required to be made by the Authority, under section 15(4D) above.
      (2) In exercising the function conferred by subsection (1) above, the Competition Commission shall have regard to the matters as respects which duties are imposed on the Regulator by section 4 above.
 
      (3) Before making modifications under this section, the Competition Commission shall give notice-
 
 
    (a) stating that they propose to make the modifications and setting out their effect,
 
    (b) stating the reasons why they propose to make the modifications, and
 
    (c) specifying the period (not being less than 28 days from the date of publication of the notice) within which representations or objections may be made,
       and shall consider any representations or objections which are duly made and not withdrawn.
 
      (4) A notice under subsection (3) above shall be given-
 
 
    (a) by publishing the notice in such manner as the Competition Commission consider appropriate for the purpose of bringing the matters to which the notice relates to the attention of persons likely to be affected by the making of the modifications; and
 
    (b) by serving a copy of the notice on the holder of the licence.
      (5) As soon as practicable after making any modifications under this section, the Competition Commission shall send a copy of those modifications to the Regulator, the Authority and the Health and Safety Executive.
 
Sections 15A and 15B: supplementary.     15C. - (1) The provisions mentioned in subsection (2) below are to apply in relation to the exercise by the Competition Commission of their functions under sections 15A and 15B above as if-
 
 
    (a) in section 82(1) and (2) of the 1973 Act references to a report of the Competition Commission under that Act were references to a notice under section 15A(4) or 15B(3) above;
 
    (b) in section 85 of that Act references to an investigation on a reference made to the Competition Commission were references to an investigation by the Competition Commission for the purposes of the exercise of their functions under those sections; and
 
    (c) in section 93B of that Act references to the functions of the Competition Commission under that Act were references to their functions under those sections.
      (2) The provisions are-
 
 
    (a) sections 82(1) and (2) (general provisions as to reports), 85 (attendance of witnesses and production of documents) and 93B (false or misleading information) of the 1973 Act;
 
    (b) Part II of Schedule 7 to the Competition Act 1998 (performance of the Competition Commission's general functions); and
 
    (c) section 24 of the 1980 Act (modification of provisions about performance of such functions).
      (3) For the purpose of assisting the Competition Commission in exercising their functions under sections 15A and 15B above, the Regulator and the Authority shall give to the Competition Commission any information in his or its possession which relates to matters relevant to the exercise of those functions and-
 
 
    (a) is requested by the Competition Commission for that purpose; or
 
    (b) is information which, in his or its opinion, it would be appropriate for that purpose to give to the Competition Commission without any such request;
       and any other assistance which the Competition Commission may require, and which it is within his or its power to give, in relation to any such matters.
 
      (4) For the purpose of exercising those functions, the Competition Commission shall take account of any information given to them for that purpose under subsection (3) above."
 
 
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