Restriction on public sector exit payments

Enterprise Bill [Lords] – in the House of Commons at 3:49 pm on 8th March 2016.

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Votes in this debate

Amendment proposed: 18, page 56, line 18, at end insert—

‘(1A) The restriction placed on public sector exit payments must be reviewed at regular intervals and, where necessary, be adjusted in line with inflation and earnings growth.’.—(Alan Brown.)

This amendment would ensure that the level that the restriction on public sector exit payments is set will be linked to inflation and earnings growth.

Question put, That the amendment be made.

The House divided:

Ayes 268, Noes 293.

Division number 208 Enterprise Bill [Lords] — Restriction on public sector exit payments

Aye: 268 MPs

No: 293 MPs

Ayes: A-Z by last name

Tellers

Nos: A-Z by last name

Tellers

Question accordingly negatived.

Amendments made: 3, page 58, line 7, at end insert—

“() by the Welsh Ministers, in relation to relevant Welsh exit payments;”

This amendment confers power on the Welsh Ministers (instead of the Treasury) to make regulations under new section 153A of the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Act 2015 restricting the total amount of exit payments made to the holder of an office in Wales mentioned in amendment 5.

Amendment 4, page 58, line 27, at end insert—

“() if made by the Welsh Ministers, may not be made unless a draft of the statutory instrument containing them has been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, the National Assembly for Wales.”

This amendment provides for the procedure in the National Assembly for Wales in relation to regulations under new section 153A made by the Welsh Ministers (see explanatory statement for amendment 3).

Amendment 5, page 58, line 32, at end insert—

“( ) In this section “relevant Welsh exit payments” means exit payments made to holders of the following offices—

(a) member of the National Assembly for Wales;

(b) the First Minister for Wales;

(c) Welsh Minister appointed under section 48 of the Government of Wales Act 2006;

(d) Counsel General to the Welsh Government;

(e) Deputy Welsh Minister;

(f) member of a county council or a county borough council in Wales;

(g) member of a National Park Authority in Wales;

(h) member of a Fire and Rescue Authority in Wales.”

This amendment specifies the offices in Wales in relation to which the Welsh Ministers can make regulations under new section 153A (see explanatory statement for amendment 3).

Amendment 6, page 58, line 37, at end insert—

“(2A) The Welsh Ministers may relax any restriction imposed by regulations made by the Welsh Ministers under section 153A.”

This amendment ensures that the Welsh Ministers have power to relax restrictions imposed by them under new section 153A (see explanatory statement for amendment 3).

Amendment 7, page 59, line 1, at beginning insert—

“except in relation to exit payments made by a relevant Welsh authority,”

This amendment ensures that the Treasury are not able to impose limitations on the power of the Welsh Ministers to relax certain restrictions imposed by Treasury regulations (see explanatory statement for amendment 8).

Amendment 8, page 59, leave out lines 18 to 24 and insert—

“(6) Regulations under section 153A made by the Welsh Ministers may—

(a) make provision for the power under subsection (2A) to be exercisable on behalf of the Welsh Ministers by a person specified in the regulations;

(b) where provision is made by virtue of paragraph (a), make provision for a requirement to be relaxed only—

(i) with the consent of the Welsh Ministers, or

(ii) following compliance with any directions given by the Welsh Ministers;

(c) make provision as to the publication of information about any relaxation of a requirement granted.

(6A) Regulations made by the Treasury under section 153A(1)—

(a) must, if they make provision in relation to exit payments made by a relevant Welsh authority, provide for the power conferred on a Minister of the Crown by subsection (1) to be exercised instead by the Welsh Ministers in relation to those exit payments;

(b) may provide for the power conferred on a Minister of the Crown by subsection (1) to be exercised instead by the Welsh Ministers in relation to exit payments made by any other authority who is not a relevant Welsh authority but who wholly or mainly exercises functions in relation to Wales (but this does not limit the provision that may be made under subsection (4)(a)).”

This amendment allows the Welsh Ministers to provide for another person to relax on their behalf restrictions imposed by them under new section 153A (see explanatory statement for amendment 6). It also requires the Treasury to provide for the Welsh Ministers to be able to relax certain restrictions imposed by Treasury regulations, and gives the Treasury power so to provide in relation to other such restrictions.

Amendment 9, page 59, line 26, at end insert—

“relevant Welsh authority” means an authority who wholly or mainly exercises functions which could be conferred by provision falling within the legislative competence of the National Assembly for Wales (as defined in section 108 of the Government of Wales Act 2006).”—(Anna Soubry.)

This amendment defines “relevant Welsh authority” for the purposes of the provisions inserted by amendments 7 and 8.

Ordered, That further consideration be now adjourned. —(Julian Smith.)

Bill to be further considered tomorrow.