New Clause 3

Sustainable Communities Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 3:45 pm on 23rd May 2007.

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Local spending reports: rights of principal councils and representatives of local persons

‘(1) After considering the information contained in a local spending report issued pursuant to section 4, a principal council may make recommendations to the Secretary of State as to—

(a) whether that council could decide how any part of the money specified in that report may be spent; and

(b) any consequential delegation of functions to the council.

(2) Where a principal council proposes to make recommendations pursuant to subsection (1), it must—

(a) refer the matter to any panels under section 3 for consideration; or

(b) establish such panels if they do not exist and refer the matter to them for consideration.

(3) A principal council and any panels acting pursuant to this section shall exercise their functions to promote the sustainability of local communities.

(4) Within three months of receiving recommendations made by a principal council under subsection (1), the Secretary of State shall either adopt or reject each of the recommendations, and in either case shall give reasons for his decision.

(5) At least once in each calendar year the Secretary of State shall publish a report providing details of all decisions taken pursuant to subsection (4) above.’.

Brought up, and read the First and Second time.

Amendments made: (a), in Line 2, leave out ‘may’ and insert ‘subject to subsection (2)’.

(b), in Line 6, at end insert—

‘(2A) A principal council may not make recommendations regarding any money that has been specified in the local spending report as being spent on services of a wider or national significance.

(2B) In subsection (2) “services primarily of a wider or national significance” means services provided wholly or largely for the benefit of persons resident in areas wider than the area of the council.’.

(c), in Line 12, leave out ‘shall’, insert—‘(a) ’.

(d), in Line 13, at end insert ‘and

(b) have regard to the council’s community strategy prepared pursuant to section 4 of the Local Government Act 2000 (c.22);

(c) specify that in their opinion any recommendations are consistent with that community strategy; and

(d) give their reasons for that opinion.’.—[Mr Hurd.]

Clause, as amended, added to the Bill.