New Clause 5 — Regional Management Structures

Part of Fire and Rescue Services Bill – in the House of Commons at 6:57 pm on 15th March 2004.

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Photo of Sylvia Heal Sylvia Heal Deputy Speaker 6:57 pm, 15th March 2004

With this it will be convenient to discuss the following:

New clause 9—Limitation on power of Secretary of State to appoint members of a combined fire and rescue authority—

'(1) Where a scheme made under section 2 provides for members of a combined fire and rescue authority to be appointed by the Secretary of State the provisions of this section shall apply.

(2) Before making an appointment to a combined fire and rescue authority the Secretary of State shall invite each of the existing authorities with power to appoint members to the combined fire and rescue authority to submit to him a list of nominees for consideration for appointment by the Secretary of State.

(3) The Secretary of State shall appoint from the lists of nominees received those persons who appear to him to be best qualified to serve as members of the combined fire and rescue authority unless there are an insufficient number of persons on the lists appearing to the Secretary of State to be suitable for appointment.

(4) If the Secretary of State considers that there are an insufficient number of suitable persons on the lists to make all the necessary appointments he shall advise each of the existing authorities of his reasons for considering each of their unsuccessful nominees as unsuitable for appointment and shall indicate the qualities, experience and other relevant factors required for appointment by the Secretary of State in the particular case.

(5) Each of the existing authorities shall then be invited to submit a further list of nominees fulfilling the criteria set down in accordance with subsection (4) by the Secretary of State.

(6) Upon receipt of the further lists referred to in subsection (5) the Secretary of State shall appoint from the lists those persons who appear to him to be best qualified to serve as members of the combined fire and rescue authority.

(7) If there are insufficient numbers of persons appearing to the Secretary of State to be suitably qualified for appointment on the lists submitted, the Secretary of State may appoint such other persons as he considers suitable to fill any remaining vacancy.

(8) On the occurrance of any casual vacancy for membership of a fire and rescue authority which falls under the terms of the scheme to be filled by an appointment by the Secretary of State the procedure set out in subsections (2) to (7) shall apply.'.

Amendment No. 21, in clause 2, page 2, line 14, after 'Act', insert

'that one or more fire and rescue authorities are failing to discharge their duties and this Act and'.

Amendment No. 14, in page 2, line 16, leave out from 'area' to end of line 18.

Amendment No. 3, in page 2, line 17, leave out from 'constitutes' to end of line 18 and insert

'an area identified by the study published by the Secretary of State in accordance with section [regional management structures] as an optimum geographical area for the organisation of fire and rescue services.'.

Amendment No. 22, in page 2, line 18, at end insert—

', or

(c) that a draft scheme has been submitted to him by two or more existing authorities and it appears to the Secretary of State that for the purposes of this Act, in the interests of greater economy, efficiency and effectiveness, there should be a single fire and rescue authority for the combined area.'.

Government amendments Nos. 7 and 8.

Amendment No. 23, in clause 3, page 3, line 40, leave out 'half' and insert 'one third'.

Government amendments Nos. 9 to 11.