London Local Authorities Bill [HL]
Tuesday 18 February 2003
420. MR LEWIS: Yes.
421. CHAIRMAN: Can we have that?
422. MR LEWIS: Yes.
423. CHAIRMAN: I know you are objecting to ----
(Mr Jones) We object to the other elements
dealing with litter and dog fouling.
424. CHAIRMAN: And, indeed, the setting of fixed
425. MR LEWIS: That is only in relation to littering
and dog fouling.
426. CHAIRMAN: Okay. Are there any more questions
or would anybody like to say anything more on these clauses?
427. LORD ELTON: Just a very small question. On page
17 at (4) we have an encouragement to send money by post in a
letter containing the amount of the penalty in cash or otherwise,
which is something that everyone else encourages us not to do.
Is this taken from other legislation? Why is that in?
428. MR LEWIS: I believe it is taken straight from
the litter legislation but I can check that because we have that.
429. LORD ELTON: If it is precedented I would not
object but if it is a new idea I should have thought it is a bad
430. LORD TORDOFF: Even if it is precedented, is
(Mr Jones) There is a precedent for that in
the Environmental Protection Act.
431. CHAIRMAN: Which is a relatively recent Act.
(Mr Jones) 1990.
(Mr Lester) I think under any circumstances
we have to retain the provision for anybody who receives a penalty
to pay for it in cash, if that is the way they wish to pay for
432. LORD ELTON: Not necessarily by post.
(Mr Lester) Not necessarily by post.
433. MR LEWIS: I see the point you are making, the
fact that the words are there might encourage people who would
otherwise not use cash to use cash.
434. LORD TORDOFF: "Containing the amount of
the penalty" full stop.
435. MR LEWIS: We would be happy to remove those
words in parenthesis. I do not think that the clause would be
affected prejudicially if they were removed.
436. CHAIRMAN: We will leave that with you. Thank
you very much everybody on those clauses. So we move now on to
a new area, the Greater London Magistrates' Courts Authority,
Clause 30, I think.
The witnesses withdrew
437. MR LEWIS: Yes, my Lord. My Lord, Clause 30,
Greater London Magistrates' Courts Authority. This clause is another
one which has been somewhat overtaken by events. In short, what
this clause does is remedy what we believe the Government acknowledges
is an existing deficiency in the magistrates' court legislation
under section 59B of the Justices of the Peace Act 1997. Regulations
under that section deal with the way in which the Greater London
Magistrates' Court Authority is financed. It was the original
intention of the Government, I believe, that the proportions which
the councils should have to pay to the GLMCA should somehow be
related to council tax income. However, section 59B does not enable
regulations to be made along those lines. This clause will enable
that to change.
438. However, as your Lordships will know, the Courts
Bill is currently before your House and one of the proposals within
that Bill is to repeal Section 59B. Now, I think it is fair to
assume that the Courts Bill will reach the statute book before
the London Local Authorities Bill, but what is not so certain
is when the relevant provision which repeals section 59B will
come into force. If there is any possibility that the implementation
of that provision is delayed so that Clause 30 could take effect,
even if only for a short period of tine, then the Promoters would
rather leave the clause in.
439. There have been no Government reports against
this clause and, in fact, I can report that before the Bill was
deposited the clause was approved by the Lord Chancellor's Department.