Police (Northern Ireland) Bill [HL]—
Amendments to be debated in the House of Lordscontinued

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"Belfast district policing partnership

 17   (1)   The preceding paragraphs of this Schedule have effect in relation to the district policing partnership for Belfast with the following modifications.
(2)      In paragraph 2 after sub-paragraph (5) insert—
    "(6)      The members of the DPP who are appointed by the council in accordance with paragraph 3 shall include the persons who hold the office of chairman of each of the sub-groups of the DPP established under section 21."
    (3)      In paragraph 5 after sub-paragraph (3) insert—
      "(3A)      In relation to each person nominated by it under sub-paragraph (1) the council shall also notify the Board of—
      (a)  whether the person is also willing to be a candidate for appointment as an independent member of a sub-group established under section 21;
      (b)  the sub-group or sub-groups concerned, if he is so willing.""
       13      After Schedule 3 insert—
       

      "SCHEDULE 3A

      BELFAST SUB-GROUPS

       

      Interpretation

       1   (1)   In this Schedule—
       "the council" means the district council for Belfast;
       a "declaration against terrorism" means a declaration in the form set out in Part 1 of Schedule 2 to the Elected Authorities (Northern Ireland) Act 1989, with the substitution of the words "if appointed" for the words "if elected";
       "independent member", in relation to a sub-group, means a member appointed under paragraph 2(4);
       "local general election" has the same meaning as in the Electoral Law Act (Northern Ireland) 1962;
       "the partnership" means the district policing partnership for Belfast;
       "political member", in relation to a sub-group, means a member appointed under paragraph 2(3);
       "sub-group" means a sub-group established under section 21.
      (2)      For the purposes of this Schedule an independent member of the council shall be treated as a party.
       

      Size and composition

       2   (1)   A sub-group shall consist of 11 members.
      (2)      The members of a sub-group need not be members of the partnership.
      (3)      Six of the members of a sub-group shall be appointed by the council from among members of the council in accordance with paragraph 3.
      (4)      Five of the members of a sub-group shall be appointed in accordance with paragraph 4.
       

      Political members

       3   (1)   The council shall exercise its power to appoint political members of a sub-group so as to ensure that, so far as practicable, the political members of all the sub-groups, taken together, reflect the balance of parties prevailing among the members of the council immediately after the last local general election.
      (2)      Subject to the following provisions of this paragraph, a person shall hold and vacate office as a political member in accordance with the terms of his appointment.
      (3)      A political member shall hold office until the date of the local general election next following his appointment.
      (4)      A person appointed to fill a casual vacancy shall hold office for the remainder of the term of the political member in whose place he is appointed.
      (5)      A political member shall cease to hold office if—
      (a)  he resigns by notice in writing to the council;
      (b)  he becomes disqualified for membership of a sub-group; or
      (c)  he ceases to be a member of the council.
      (6)      A person whose term of office as a political member expires or who has resigned shall be eligible for re-appointment.
       

      Independent members

       4   (1)   Appointments of independent members shall be made by the Board from among persons nominated by the council in accordance with paragraph 5.
      (2)      In appointing independent members of a sub-group the Board shall so far as practicable secure that the members of the sub-group (taken together) are representative of the community in the sub-group's police district.
      (3)      Subject to the following provisions of this paragraph, a person shall hold and vacate office as an independent member in accordance with the terms of his appointment.
      (4)      An independent member shall hold office until the date of the local general election next following his appointment.
      (5)      A person appointed to fill a casual vacancy shall hold office for the remainder of the term of the independent member in whose place he is appointed.
      (6)      An independent member shall cease to hold office if—
      (a)  he resigns by notice in writing to the council; or
      (b)  he becomes disqualified for membership of a sub-group.
      (7)      A person whose term of office as an independent member expires or who has resigned shall be eligible for re-appointment.
       

      The council's nominations

       5   (1)   Where appointments are to be made of independent members of a sub-group, the council shall nominate persons willing to be candidates for appointment.
      (2)      Unless otherwise agreed with the Board, the number of persons to be nominated under sub-paragraph (1) on any occasion shall be twice the number of appointments to be made of independent members.
      (3)      The council shall notify the Board of—
      (a)  the name of each person nominated by it under sub-paragraph (1); and
      (b)  such other information regarding those persons as it considers appropriate.
      (4)      In relation to each person nominated by it under sub-paragraph (1) the council shall also notify the Board of—
      (a)  whether the person is also willing to be a candidate for appointment as an independent member of any other sub-group;
      (b)  the sub-group or sub-groups concerned, if he is so willing;
      (c)  whether the person is also willing to be a candidate for appointment as an independent member of the partnership.
      (5)      A person shall not be nominated under sub-paragraph (1) if—
      (a)  he is disqualified for membership of a sub-group, or
      (b)  he has not made a declaration against terrorism.
      (6)      Where the number of persons nominated by the council is less than twice the number of appointments to be made, the Board may itself nominate such number of candidates as when added to the number nominated by the council equals twice the number of appointments to be made.
      (7)      If the Board does so, paragraph 4(1) shall have effect as if those persons had been nominated by the council.
       

      Code of practice on appointment of independent members

       6   (1)   In exercising functions under paragraphs 4 and 5, the council and the Board shall have regard to any code of practice under this paragraph.
      (2)      The Secretary of State may issue, and from time to time revise, a code of practice containing guidance as to the exercise by the council and the Board of their functions under paragraphs 4 and 5.
      (3)      Before issuing or revising a code of practice under this paragraph, the Secretary of State shall consult—
      (a)  the Board;
      (b)  the council; and
      (c)  the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland.
      (4)      The Secretary of State shall arrange for any code of practice issued or revised under this paragraph to be published in such manner as appears to him to be appropriate.
       

      Removal of members from office

       7   (1)   The Board, or the council with the approval of the Board, may remove a person from office as a political or independent member of a sub-group if satisfied that—
      (a)  in the case of an independent member, he failed to make the necessary disclosure in relation to a conviction of his for a criminal offence in Northern Ireland or elsewhere;
      (b)  in the case of an independent member, he has acted in breach of the terms of a declaration against terrorism;
      (c)  he has been convicted of a criminal offence in Northern Ireland or elsewhere committed after the date of his appointment;
      (d)  he has become bankrupt or made a composition or arrangement with his creditors;
      (e)  he has failed to comply with the terms of his appointment; or
      (f)  he is otherwise unable or unfit to discharge his functions as a member of the sub-group.
      (2)      "The necessary disclosure", in relation to a conviction of an independent member, means full disclosure of it—
      (a)  before his nomination, to the council;
      (b)  before his appointment, to the Board.
      (3)      Section 6 of the Elected Authorities (Northern Ireland) Act 1989 applies to determine whether an independent member has acted in breach of the terms of a declaration against terrorism as it applies to determine whether a person who has made a declaration required for the purpose of section 3, 4 or 5 of that Act has acted in breach of the terms of the declaration.
      (4)      As applied by sub-paragraph (3), section 6 of the Elected Authorities (Northern Ireland) Act 1989 applies with the following modifications—
      (a)  in subsection (1), for the words from "after" to "the Assembly" substitute "when he is an independent member of a sub-group established under section 21 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2000";
      (b)  omit subsection (4);
      (c)  in subsection (5), in the definition of "public meeting" after paragraph (c) insert—
        "(d)  any meeting of a sub-group established under section 21 of the Police (Northern Ireland) Act 2000 or a committee of such a sub-group (whether or not a meeting which the public is permitted to attend), and
        (e)   any meeting of a district policing partnership or a committee of a district policing partnership (whether or not a meeting which the public is permitted to attend),".
         

        Disqualification

         8   (1)   A person is disqualified for membership of a sub-group if he is—
        (a)  a police officer;
        (b)  a member of the police support staff;
        (c)  a member of the Board; or
        (d)  an employee of the council.
        (2)      A person removed from office under paragraph 7(1) is disqualified for membership of a sub-group until the date of the next local general election following his removal.
        (3)      A person is disqualified for being an independent member of a sub-group if—
        (a)  he has been convicted in Northern Ireland or elsewhere of any offence and has had passed on him a sentence of imprisonment or detention, and
        (b)  the relevant period has not ended.
        (4)      The relevant period is the period of five years beginning with the person's discharge in respect of the offence.
        (5)      For the purposes of sub-paragraph (4) the following are to be treated as the discharge of a person (whether or not his release is subject to conditions)—
        (a)  his release on licence;
        (b)  his release in pursuance of a grant of remission.
        (6)      Sub-paragraph (5) does not apply in relation to the release of a person in respect of an offence if he is required to return to prison or detention for a further period in respect of the offence.
        (7)      Subject to sub-paragraph (8), the reference in sub-paragraph (3) to a sentence of imprisonment or detention does not include a suspended sentence.
        (8)      Sub-paragraph (7) does not apply in relation to a suspended sentence that has been ordered to take effect.
        (9)      In this paragraph "suspended sentence" means a sentence of imprisonment or detention that is ordered not to take effect unless the conditions specified in the order are met.
         

        Chairman and vice-chairman

         9   (1)   There shall be a chairman and vice-chairman of a sub-group appointed by the council from among the political members.
        (2)      In making appointments under sub-paragraph (1), the council shall ensure that, so far as practicable—
        (a)  the office of chairman and vice-chairman are at all times held by members of different political parties;
        (b)  a person is appointed to the office of chairman or vice-chairman for a term of 12 months at a time or, where that period is shorter than 12 months, for a period ending with the date of the local general election next following his appointment;
        (c)  the office of chairman is held in turn by each of the four largest parties represented on the council immediately after the last local general election;
        (d)  the office of chairman is not held by a person who is a member of the same political party as a person who holds the office of chairman of another sub-group.
        (3)      Subject to the following provisions of this paragraph, a person shall hold and vacate office as chairman or vice-chairman in accordance with the terms of his appointment.
        (4)      A person may at any time resign as chairman or vice-chairman by notice in writing to the council.
        (5)      If the chairman or vice-chairman ceases to be a member of the sub-group, he shall also cease to hold office as chairman or vice-chairman.

 
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3 April 2003