Utilities Bill - continued        House of Lords
PART IV, AMENDMENT OF THE ELECTRICITY ACT 1989 - continued
Duties of electricity distributors - continued

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Special agreements with respect to connection.     49. For section 22 of the 1989 Act (special agreements with respect to supply) there is substituted-
 
 
"Special agreements with respect to connection.     22. - (1) Notwithstanding anything in sections 16 to 21, a person who requires a connection in pursuance of section 16(1) may enter into an agreement with the electricity distributor (referred to in this Part as a "special connection agreement") for the making of the connection on such terms as may be agreed by the parties.
 
    (2) So long as a special connection agreement is effective, the rights and liabilities of the parties shall be those arising under the agreement and not those provided for by sections 16 to 21.
 
      (3) Nothing in subsection (2) prevents the giving of a notice under section 16A(1) requiring a connection to be made as from the time when a special connection agreement ceases to be effective."
 
General duties of electricity distributors.     50. In section 9 of the 1989 Act (general duties of licence holders), for subsection (1) there is substituted-
 
 
    "(1) It shall be the duty of an electricity distributor-
 
 
    (a) to develop and maintain an efficient, co-ordinated and economical system of electricity distribution;
 
    (b) to facilitate competition in the supply and generation of electricity."
 
Electricity code and metering
The electricity code.     51. - (1) In section 24 of the 1989 Act (the public electricity supply code), for "supply of electricity by public electricity suppliers" there is substituted "distribution and supply of electricity".
 
      (2) For Schedule 6 to the 1989 Act (the public electricity supply code) there is substituted the provisions of Schedule 4.
 
Amendment of Schedule 7 to the 1989 Act.     52. Schedule 5 (which amends Schedule 7 to the 1989 Act) has effect.
 
 
Powers of electricity licence holders
Powers of electricity licence holders.     53. - (1) Section 10 of the 1989 Act (powers of licence holders) is amended as follows.
 
      (2) In subsection (1), in paragraph (a) the words "a public electricity supplier or" shall cease to have effect and, in paragraph (b) after "to" (in the second place it appears) there is inserted "an electricity distributor or".
 
      (3) In subsection (3), for "A licence under section 6(1)(a) above" there is substituted "A generation licence".
 
      (4) After subsection (3) there is inserted-
 
 
    "(3A) Subsection (3) applies in relation to any purpose connected with the supply to any premises of any gas or liquid subjected to a cooling effect produced in association with electricity as it applies to a purpose mentioned in that subsection."
 
      (5) In subsection (4), for "A licence under paragraph (b) or (c) of section 6(1) above" there is substituted "A transmission licence".
 
 
Electricity performance standards
Standards of performance in individual cases.     54. - (1) In section 39 of the 1989 Act-
 
 
    (a) in subsection (2)(a), after "section" there is inserted "or their rights under section 39A"; and
 
    (b) subsections (5), (5A) and (6) shall cease to have effect.
      (2) After section 39 of the 1989 Act there is inserted-
 
 
"Standards of performance in individual cases: electricity distributors.     39A. - (1) The Authority may with the consent of the Secretary of State make regulations prescribing such standards of performance in connection with the activities of electricity distributors, so far as affecting customers or potential customers of electricity suppliers, as in the Authority's opinion ought to be achieved in individual cases.
 
    (2) If an electricity distributor fails to meet a prescribed standard, he shall make to any person who is affected by the failure and is of a prescribed description such compensation as may be determined by or under the regulations.
 
      (3) The regulations may-
 
 
    (a) prescribe circumstances in which electricity distributors are to inform customers or potential customers of electricity suppliers of their rights under this section;
 
    (b) prescribe such standards of performance in relation to any duty arising under paragraph (a) as, in the Authority's opinion, ought to be achieved in all cases;
 
    (c) make provision as to the manner in which compensation under this section is to be made;
 
    (d) prescribe circumstances in which electricity distributors are to be exempted from any requirements of the regulations or this section; and
 
    (e) if the Authority is of the opinion that the differences are such that no electricity distributor would be unduly disadvantaged in competing with other electricity distributors, make different provision with respect to different electricity distributors.
      (4) Provision made under subsection (3)(c) may-
 
 
    (a) require or permit compensation to be made on behalf of electricity distributors by electricity suppliers to customers or potential customers; and
 
    (b) require electricity suppliers to provide services to electricity distributors in connection with the making of compensation under this section.
      (5) The making of compensation under this section in respect of any failure to meet a prescribed standard shall not prejudice any other remedy which may be available in respect of the act or omission which constituted that failure.
 
      (6) In this section "prescribed" means prescribed by regulations under this section.
 
Standards of performance in individual cases: disputes.     39B. - (1) Any dispute arising under section 39 or 39A or regulations made under either of those sections-
 
 
    (a) may be referred to the Authority by either party or, with the agreement of either party, by the Council; and
 
    (b) on such a reference, shall be determined by order made by the Authority or, if it thinks fit, by such person (other than the Council) as may be prescribed.
      (2) A person making an order under subsection (1) shall include in the order his reasons for reaching his decision with respect to the dispute.
 
      (3) The practice and procedure to be followed in connection with any such determination shall be such as may be prescribed.
 
      (4) An order under subsection (1) shall be final and shall be enforceable-
 
 
    (a) in England and Wales, as if it were a judgment of a county court; and
 
    (b) in Scotland, as if it were an extract registered decree arbitral bearing a warrant for execution issued by the sheriff.
      (5) In this section "prescribed" means prescribed by regulations made by the Authority with the consent of the Secretary of State."
 
 
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