HC Deb 14 April 1959 vol 603 cc944-6
Mr. Iain Macleod

I beg to move, in page 9, line 36, to leave out " by order ".

Mr. Speaker

I think that this and the next Amendment in page 9, line 45, go together. Perhaps with them go the first five Amendments to page 10.

Mr. Macleod

I agree that this and the next six Amendments are on precisely the same point.

The Clause is a most important Clause because it puts into permanent form powers which have been used by successive Ministers of Labour over the last nineteen years mainly under Defence Regulations. The major point which emerged from our Committee discussion was some anxiety on the question of consultation and agreement, which is a familiar argument to all hon. Members which turns up at every Committee stage. I suggested a solution which I think met with general approval and which the seven Amendments enshrine. This was that when an order was a general exemption order it should take the form of special Regulations. This meets the point made by the hon. Member for Birmingham, Perry Barr (Mr. C. Howell) in relation to Joint Industrial Councils, because the whole point of the Amendments is that if we have the procedure laid down in the Second Schedule of the 1937 Act, all tile bodies concerned have then to be consulted and one of the first, if not the first, which would be so consulted would be a J.I.C.

10.0 p.m.

What I suggest is that we amend the Clause with all seven Amendments. Then if, at any time, a general exemption is granted—it might relate to an industry or part of an industry— it will be by special regulations. That means that the regulations will be published in draft. If objections are raised, an inquiry can be conducted. Even after that, the whole authority of the House of Commons remains. This would be a substantial improvement to the Clause and I recommend these Amendments to the House.

Amendment agreed to.

Further Amendments made: In page 9, line 45, leave out by an order ".

In page 10, line 4, leave out " order " and insert: instrument by which it is granted".

In line 6, leave out from beginning to extending " in line 7 and insert " An exemption under this section ".

In line 10, leave out " is referred to " and insert: shall be granted by order, to be known".

In line 11, leave out from " other" to end of line 12 and insert: exemption under this section shall be granted by special regulations, to be known as general exemption regulations".

In line 17, leave out " a general exemption order " and insert " general exemption regulations ".—[Mr. Iain Macleod.]

Mr. Iain Macleod

I beg to move, in page 10, line 22, at the end to insert: (b) on the application of a wages council; or. This is a simple drafting Amendment to provide that a wages council should be able to apply for a general exemption. I am advised that a wages council cannot be described as a body similar to a joint industrial council. Obviously, it should be included.

Amendment agreed to.