HC Deb 30 January 1929 vol 224 cc1049-50

(1) The council of every county, as soon as may he after completing the first general review of the circumstances of districts wholly or partly within the county made or treated as hvaing been made by them under this Part of this Act, shall review the electoral divisions of the county and shall consider whether any alteration of the boundary of any such division, or of the number of county councillors and electoral divisions in the county, is desirable, and shall forthwith, after the review is completed and before the first day of January, nineteen hundred and thirty-three, or such later date as the Secretary of State may in any case allow, send to the Secretary of State a report of the review, together with proposals as to the alterations (if any) which they consider desirable, and any such proposals shall have effect as if they had been a representation made to the Secretary of State under Section 54 of the Local Government Act, 1888.

Provided that if in the case of any county the Secretary of State is satisfied after considering such representations, if any, as may be made by local authorities in the county, that it is unnecessary to make any such review as aforesaid, he may direct that this section shall not apply as respects that county.

(2) If it appears to the Secretary of State, either on the representation of a local authority or otherwise and after consultation with such authorities as appear to him to be interested, that there is a prima facie case for making any such alteration as aforesaid and that the county council have failed to make a proposal for to purpose within the time allowed, the Secretary of State shall publish in one or more newspapers circulating in the county a notice that he proposes to make the alteration and that a copy of his proposals is open to inspection at a specified place and that representations with respect thereto may be made to him within six weeks after the publication of the notice, and the Secretary of State, after considering any representations which may be made within that period, and if any objections are made by any local authority and are not withdrawn, after holding a local inquiry with respect to the proposals to which the objections relate, may make an order effecting the alteration or such modified alteration as appears to him to be expedient.

(3) An order made under this section shall be laid before Parliament as soon as maybe after it is made.—[Sir K. Wood]

Brought up, and read the First time.


I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."

The Committee will remember the discussion on this subject which was raised by the hon. Member for Cambridge (Sir D. Newton). This Clause provides for the redistribution of the county electoral divisions immediately after the review of the local administrative areas has been completed. An Amendment was moved with the same object in Committee on, I think, Clause 39 of the Bill, and withdrawn on the understanding that a new Clause for this purpose would be put down. The review is to be made by the 1st April, 1932, or such later date as may be approved by the Minister of Health, and the county council must submit their scheme of new electoral divisions by the 1st January, 1933, or such later date as may be approved by the Secretary of State. The scheme which I am now proposing will thus be settled and come into force in time for the triennial elections in 1934. The Secretary of State may, however, relieve a county council from making the review —because we do not want unnecessary reviews to be made—if he is satisfied that the existing distribution is satisfactory, and of course, in case of default, provision is made similar to that in Clause 39 relating to Local Government areas, and the representations of any local authorities or counties will be considered. I think the Clause meets the wishes that were expressed in various parts of the Committee.

Clause read a Second time, and added to the Bill.