Clause 13 - Powers in relation to landfill operators

Part of Waste and Emissions Trading Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 8th April 2003.

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Photo of Michael Meacher Michael Meacher Minister (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) (Environment) 4:00 pm, 8th April 2003

Those who spend all their time reading and comparing legislation may draw that conclusion. It is a relevant point.

The second intention behind amendment No. 65 seems to be that monitoring authorities can enter the premises of a landfill operator only for the purposes of finding, inspecting or copying records. I am advised that the amendment is not necessary because the list specified in clause 13(3)(d) is not a list of examples. It is not purely a list of hypothetical actions that could be added; it is a definitive list of the purposes for which the monitoring authority or persons authorised by it may enter premises. That is an important point. The use of the word ''only'' is not necessary. Equally, the use of word such as ''reasonable'', which the hon. Member for Lewes suggested, is not necessary either.

The hon. Gentleman asked what the words in line 34 in clause 13(3), an ''allocating authority'' or

''persons authorised by the monitoring authority'',

referred to. He suggested that it could mean a debt collection agency, for example. That is not the intention. I understand that the relevant monitoring authority in Northern Ireland carries out some of its operations through a group of inspectors who are attached to it but are not necessarily its employees. I am unsure of the detail. It allows for a slightly different situation that applies in one of the devolved Administrations; it is not intended to allow the monitoring authorities to detail very different kinds of bodies or institutions to have those powers.