Charge collectors

Fisheries Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:45 pm on 17 December 2018.

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

Photo of George Eustice George Eustice The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

The purpose of this clause is simply to enable the Secretary of State, when setting up a charging scheme, to determine the functions of a charge collector, together with certain details such as terms of appointment and termination of the charge collector. Subsection (1) states that the Secretary of State can appoint a charge collector to administer the scheme and to specify the terms and termination of their appointment and functions they will carry out. Subsection (2) details the nature of the functions that may be conferred on the charge collector. Subsection (3) provides that the scheme may allow for duties to be placed on a charge collector after their appointment has been terminated. Subsection (4) allows a scheme to contain provision about appeals against decisions of charge collectors. Subsection (5) provides for the possibility that any expenditure incurred by the charge collector when exercising their functions can be recovered.

Photo of Alistair Carmichael Alistair Carmichael Liberal Democrat Chief Whip, Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Northern Ireland)

Can the Minister confirm that, although these provisions exist, they are permissive and it would remain possible for Government Departments to carry out those functions?

Photo of George Eustice George Eustice The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Yes, that is absolutely the case. Indeed, it is likely to be the case that the Marine Management Organisation would perform those functions on behalf of the Government. The clause simply provides the opportunity for others to be involved, should that be required.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 26 accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.

Clause 27