Official Report (Hansard)

Session: 2013/2014

Date: 18 February 2014

PDF version of this report (88.65 kb)

Committee for the Environment


Local Government Bill: Draft Report


The Chairperson: We have the Department's reply to outstanding Committee queries about the Bill.  The Department has replied to all Committee queries dating back to the meeting of 24 January.  Do members have any comments?  If not, are you content to note the correspondence?


Members indicated assent.


The Chairperson: The next item is the Department's reply regarding further amendments to the Local Government Bill.  The Department has now provided a list of further amendments to the Bill.  Are there any comments on that?  It is for information only; we cannot change decisions now that were taken during formal clause-by-clause scrutiny.  Are members content?


Members indicated assent.


The Chairperson: We have further correspondence about the Bill from the Northern Ireland Local Government Association (NILGA) and from Community Places.  As discussed earlier, we have formally closed the scrutiny stage, so, as a Committee, we cannot consider amendments to the Bill.  However, there is nothing to stop Committee members or any MLA proposing amendments in support of the issues raised by those two stakeholders.  We will include their correspondence in our report as late submissions.  We will also include the Department's response to the two organisations.


Lord Morrow: Chair, I just want to be clear about this so that there is no misunderstanding at a later stage.  This will not be a Committee stance but will be left to an individual or a party, which will undoubtedly happen, to say and do as they like when the matter comes up on the Floor of the House.


The Chairperson: Absolutely.


Lord Morrow: It will not be put forward as someone speaking on behalf of the Committee.


The Chairperson: No, but individual Committee members or any party can obviously take it forward if they wish to.


Lord Morrow: Fine.  Thank you.


The Chairperson: I refer members to clauses 95 and 98.  Earlier, we had a discussion with the Bill Clerk about the suggested amendments that were put forward previously.  Now, however, there is no need for those two amendments from the Committee.  Members, are you content that amendments agreed at last week's meeting will not be proposed by the Committee, as the powers are already included in the Bill?


Members indicated assent.


The Chairperson: Thank you.  We will now go back into closed session to discuss our draft report.  Do members agree to that?


Members indicated assent.

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