Clause 20 - Data sharing

Northern Ireland (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 9:46 am on 16 July 2013.

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Question proposed, That the clause stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Mike Penning Mike Penning The Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office

Individual electoral registration was introduced in Northern Ireland in 2002 as part of a package of measures to combat electoral fraud, which is something that we have already discussed this morning. With the introduction of individual electoral registration in Great Britain, there is an opportunity to bring the two systems closer together and increase consistency across the United Kingdom. The clause extends regulation-making powers created in schedule 2 to the Electoral Registration and Administration Act 2013 to Northern Ireland and repeals similar powers where necessary. We do not envisage that the powers will be used immediately. However, to avoid further divergence of the two systems, it is important that we put it on statute that the Secretary of State has the power to bring measures forward when she or he sees fit.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 20 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.