Select Committee on Delegated Powers and Regulatory Reform Twenty-Eighth Report

Letter from the Clerk to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The Committee considered a draft version of Government amendments to the Water Bill [HL] (and an accompanying delegated powers memorandum), to be taken in the House of Commons, on the adoption of private sewers at a meeting last week. A final version of the amendments have been agreed by the Commons, and Lords Consideration of Commons Amendments will take place tomorrow, Thursday.

With regard to the version of the amendments before the Committee, the Committee concluded that both the delegations and the level of parliamentary scrutiny were appropriate. The Committee have not, however, had an opportunity to consider the amendments in their final form. In particular, the draft version considered by the Committee did not contain a power to disapply section 146(3) of the Water Industry Act 1991, which prevents sewerage undertakers from requiring payment for a declaration of vesting in it of a sewer or lateral drain, and section 146(3) applied to all declarations of vesting pursuant to a scheme under section 105A.

I am copying this letter to frontbench spokesmen on the bill.

12 November 2003

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