I beg to move, in page 16, line 37, to leave out from "(1)," to "local," and to insert "Every."
A point raised in Committee by my hon. Friend the Member for Stirling and Falkirk Burghs (Mr. M. MacPherson) was whether the original provisions of Clause 24 affected the provisions of Section 11 of the principal Act. By this Amendment and the two subsequent Amendments we propose to recast Clause 24 with a view to marrying the provisions of the Clause as they originally stood with Section 11 of the principal Act. The effect of the Amendments is to leave untouched the rights conferred by Section 11 but requires every local authority to prepare and publish a schedule of the terms upon which they normally supply water by meter or otherwise. We preserve the right of the local water authority and of the consumer under Section 11, but require every local water authority to record in a register particulars of every agreement made by them to supply water upon terms and conditions other than those published and their schedule of charges. It finally provides that the register shall be open for inspection.
Further Amendment made: In page 16, line 38, leave out from beginning, to "shall," in line 40, and insert:
shall prepare and maintain a schedule of the terms and conditions on which they are prepared in general to give a supply of water by meter or otherwise, and that schedule."—[The Lord Advocate.]
Amendment proposed, in page 16, line 42, to leave out from the beginning, to the end of line 4, on page 17, and to insert:
(2) Nothing in the foregoing Subsection shall be construed as prejudicing the rights or duties under Section eleven of the principal Act of a local water authority or of any person supplied or proposed to be supplied by them under that Section.
(3) Every local authority shall keep a register in which they shall enter particulars of every agreement entered into by them after the commencement of this Act for the giving of a supply of water for purposes other than domestic purposes to any person on terms and conditions other than the terms and conditions for the time being set forth in the schedule maintained by them under Subsection (1) of this Section.
(4) The register kept under the last foregoing Subsection shall be kept at the office of the authority and shall be open at all reasonable hours to the inspection of all ratepayers within the district of the authority without payment of any fee."—[The Lord Advocate.]
I am glad that it is proposed to insert this Amendment in the Bill. It goes a long way towards clearing up the point which, I understand, arose upon an earlier Amendment. It has not been at all clear up to now whether the Bill applies only to domestic water. I would feel diffident about advancing that point if it were not that I hold in my hand a copy of a memorandum by a very competent town clerk of a small burgh. I believe that it is based upon a complete misunderstanding of the Bill. I am taking the opportunity of the moving of this Amendment to ask whether Section 11 still applies in every possible way, and nothing in the Bill takes anything away from it; in other words, that the Bill is entirely for domestic water.
I am glad to know that for purposes of clarity. I had already myself failed to understand, and now somebody who is much more competent than I am, has explained it. Would it be possible to make that point absolutely clear in the Preamble or in the Short Title of the Bill?