Communications Bill—
Amendments to be debated in the House of Lordscontinued

House of Lords

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Ban on newspaper proprietors holding a Channel 5 licence

 6A   (1)   A person is not to hold a Channel 5 licence if—
(a)  he runs a national newspaper which for the time being has a national market share of 20 per cent or more; or
(b)  he runs national newspapers which for the time being together have a national market share of 20 per cent or more.
(2)      For the purposes of this paragraph, each of the following shall be treated as holding a Channel 5 licence—
(a)  the actual licence holder; and
(b)  every person connected with the actual licence holder.
(3)      The provisions of paragraphs 2 to 4 of this Schedule shall apply for the purposes of this Part of this Schedule insofar as they relate to national newspapers as if a Channel 5 licence were a licence to provide a Channel 3 service."
 

THE LORD EATWELL

292A*Page 430, line 30, at beginning insert "Subject to paragraph (1A),"
292B*Page 430, line 34, at end insert—
"(1A)  A person (`A') may hold two local radio multiplex licences in the manner described in sub-paragraph (1) where—
(a)  the coverage area of one of those licensed services overlaps with the coverage area of a third licensed service in a way that means that the potential audience for one of them is or includes at least half the potential audience of the third licensed service; and
(b)  the licence for the third licensed service is held by a person other than A."
 

Clause 343

 

THE VISCOUNT ASTOR

293Page 298, line 20, leave out subsections (1) and (2) and insert—
"(   )  Subsection (9) of section 32 of the 1990 Act (limits on participation in nominated news providers) shall cease to have effect."
 

THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD GORDON OF STRATHBLANE
THE LORD FOWLER

 The above-named Lords give notice of their intention to oppose the Question that Clause 343 stand part of the Bill.
 

Clause 344

 

THE BARONESS BLACKSTONE

294Page 301, line 13, leave out from beginning to "in" in line 14 and insert—
"(ii)  is involved, to a substantial extent, in the provision of the programmes included"
295Page 301, line 15, leave out "to be likely to be" and insert "is likely to become"
 

Clause 346

 

THE BARONESS BLACKSTONE

296Page 303, line 34, leave out from beginning to "in" in line 35 and insert—
"(ii)  is involved, to a substantial extent, in the provision of the programmes included"
297Page 303, line 36, leave out "to be likely to be" and insert "is likely to become"
 

Clause 348

 

THE BARONESS BLACKSTONE

298Page 305, line 20, leave out from beginning to "in" in line 21 and insert—
"(ii)  is involved, to a substantial extent, in the provision of the programmes included"
299Page 305, line 22, leave out "to be likely to be" and insert "is likely to become"
 

Before Clause 350

 

THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE BARONESS WILCOX

299AInsert the following new Clause—
  "Meaning of "control"
(1)  Paragraph 1 of Part I of Schedule 2 to the 1990 Act shall have effect subject to the following amendments.
(2)  For sub-paragraphs (3) and (3A) there shall be substituted—
        "(3)   For the purposes of this Schedule a person has control of a body corporate if that person is able, or it is reasonable to expect that person to be able, directly or indirectly to ensure that the affairs of a body are conducted in accordance with that person's wishes.
    (3A)      In determining whether a person controls a body corporate all relevant circumstances shall be taken into account including the level of participation in the body corporate of that person and the level of participation of other participants in the body.
    (3B)      Without prejudice to the generality of sub-paragraph (3)—
    (a)  a person has control of a body corporate if that person is beneficially entitled to more than 50 per cent of the equity share capital in the body or possesses more than 50 per cent of the voting power in it, and
    (b)  a person has control of a body corporate if that person is beneficially entitled to 50 per cent of the equity share capital in the body or possesses 50 per cent of the voting power in it, and is party to an arrangement with another participant in the body corporate under which they agree to exercise their voting power or any of it in a particular way either generally or in relation to any particular issue or not to exercise their voting power or any of it in relation to any particular issue."
(3)  After paragraph 3 there shall be inserted—
     "3A   (1)   In this paragraph "guidance on control" means guidance on the matters which OFCOM consider should be taken into account in determining whether any person controls a body corporate within the meaning of paragraph 1(3) to (3A) above.
    (2)      In determining the question whether a person has control of a body corporate account shall be taken of any published guidance on control.
    (3)      OFCOM shall prepare guidance on control and shall publish a draft of the guidance in such manner as they consider appropriate for bringing it to the attention of persons who in OFCOM's opinion are likely to be affected by such guidance.
    (4)      OFCOM shall also publish, together with the draft, a notice that any person may make representations to OFCOM on the draft within such period as may be specified in the notice, not being less than one month from the date of publication.
    (5)      OFCOM shall take account of the representations made within the specified time in preparing the guidance on control and shall publish the guidance, not later than 3 months from the last day on which representations may be made under sub-paragraph (4), in such manner as they consider appropriate for bringing it to the attention of persons who in OFCOM's opinion are likely to be affected by such guidance.
    (6)      OFCOM shall keep the guidance on control under review and may publish revised guidance from time to time; and sub-paragraphs (3) to (5) above shall apply to any such revised guidance as they apply to the original guidance, with any necessary modifications.""
 

Clause 350

 

THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE BARONESS WILCOX

300Page 306, line 34, leave out paragraphs (a) and (b) and insert "for the words "to achieve the result that the affairs of the body are conducted in accordance with his wishes" there shall be substituted "to control or materially to influence the policy of the body""
 

THE LORD GORDON OF STRATHBLANE

300APage 306, leave out lines 38 to 41 and insert—
""(32A)  A person is assumed to have control, unless OFCOM has evidence to the contrary, if he has an interest of more than 30 per cent in the company and no other person or body has an interest of more than 15 per cent.""
 

THE LORD EATWELL

300BPage 306, line 38, leave out from "be" to end of line 41 and insert "taken to have control of a body corporate as mentioned in sub-paragraph (3)(b) if—
(a)  he is a participant with a 20 per cent interest in that body or is one with more than a 20 per cent interest in that body;
(b)  OFCOM has reasonable grounds to believe that he has such control; and
(c)  having been given the opportunity to consider those grounds, he is unable to show to the contrary."
 

THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE BARONESS WILCOX

 The above-named Lords give notice of their intention to oppose the Question that Clause 350 stand part of the Bill.
 

Clause 351

 

THE BARONESS WHITAKER

301Page 308, line 18, at end insert—
"(l)  the extent to which news and current affairs programmes included during the period are serving all groups within the community and such international and national coverage is relevant to their interests."
 

Clause 352

 

THE LORD McNALLY
THE BARONESS WALMSLEY

302Leave out Clause 352 and insert the following new Clause—
  "Grants to community media
(1)  OFCOM shall make such payments as they consider appropriate to the credit of a fund established under this section, to be known as the Community Media Fund ("the Fund").
(2)  The Fund shall be under the management of a body established for the purposes of this section, which shall be called the Community Media Foundation ("the Foundation").
(3)  The Foundation shall consist of—
(a)  a chairman appointed by OFCOM, and
(b)  such number of other members appointed by OFCOM, not being less than four nor more than eight, as they may from time to time determine.
(4)  The Fund may be applied by the Foundation in the making of grants for—
(a)  the establishment and development of community media,
(b)  the making of programmes to be carried by community media,
(c)  the training of persons connected with community media;
(d)  the provision of support services to community media, and
(e)  other related purposes.
(5)  When making any grant out of the Fund in pursuance of subsection (4), the Foundation may impose such conditions as they think fit, including conditions requiring the grant to be repaid in certain circumstances.
(6)  The Foundation shall perform their functions under this section with respect to the making of grants out of the Fund in such manner as they consider will secure a range and diversity of community media throughout the United Kingdom, taking account of the greater need of areas and localities which are economically disadvantaged.
(7)  OFCOM shall so exercise their power under subsection (3) to appoint the members of the Foundation as to secure that a majority of the members are persons who appear to them to represent a broad range of knowledge and experience of community media.
(8)  In this section—
 "community media" means communications services provided primarily for the benefit of members of the public in a defined geographical locality or in a particular community and not operated by the BBC or for commercial purposes.
(9)  In subsection (8)—
 "communications services" includes—
(a)  radio and television broadcasting;
(b)  electronic communications networks and services; and
(c)  content services carried by services falling within paragraph (a) or (b)."
 

Schedule 15

 

THE BARONESS BLACKSTONE

303Page 440, line 19, leave out "In"
304Page 440, line 20, after "licence)" insert "shall be amended as follows.
(2)"      
305Page 440, line 21, at end insert—
"(3)      In subsection (2), in the definition of "associated programme provider", for the words from "appears" to "inclusion" there shall be substituted "is or is likely to be involved, to a substantial extent, in the provision of the programmes included"."
306Page 450, line 12, after "interpretation)" insert—
"(a)  in the definition of "associated programme provider", for the words from "appears" to "inclusion" there shall be substituted "is or is likely to be involved, to a substantial extent, in the provision of the programmes included"; and
(b)  in the words after the definition of "the relevant period","
 

THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE BARONESS WILCOX

307Page 455, line 27, at end insert—
"(   )      Section 176 of the 1990 Act (duty to provide advance information about programmes) shall be amended as follows.
(   )      In subsection (3)(b) for "the Secretary of State by order" there shall be substituted "OFCOM, following consultation with publishers and persons providing programming services".
(   )      For subsection (4) there shall be substituted—
    "(4)      OFCOM shall produce a Code of Practice in the provision of advance information about programmes to publishers, to ensure the interests of consumers continue to be protected.""
 

THE LORD PUTTNAM
THE LORD CRICKHOWELL
THE LORD McNALLY
THE LORD HUSSEY OF NORTH BRADLEY

308Page 458, line 11, leave out sub-paragraph (4)
 

Clause 355

 

THE BARONESS BUSCOMBE
THE BARONESS WILCOX

309Page 314, line 16, leave out from "person" to end of line 19 and insert "who is in a position to determine which programmes (with or without relevant ancillary services) are to be included in the service (whether or not he has control over the broadcasting or distribution of the service).
(   )  Subsection (2) should also apply to the person, and the only person, who is in a position to determine which programme service or services are listed or promoted in an electronic programme guide."

 
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4 June 2003