HL Deb 15 July 1985 vol 466 cc558-9

32 Clause 21, page 15, line 34, leave out ("the first").

The Commons disagree to the above amendment but propose the following amendment in lieu thereof

33 Page 15, line 34, leave out ("first such").

34 Page 15, line 43, leave out subsections (5) and (6).

The Commons agree to the above amendment and have made the following consequential amendments to the Bill:

35 Clause 100, page 72, line 11, leave out ("21").

36 Page 72, line 16, leave out ("21 or").

The Earl of Gowrie

My Lords, I beg to move that this House do agree with the Commons in their Amendments Nos. 33, 35 and 36, and do not insist on their Amendment No. 32, to which the Commons have disagreed.

As my honourable friend the Joint Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education made clear last week in another place, the Government accept the amendments made to Clause 21 in this House to delete the requirement for my right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Education and Science to undertake an initial review of the new ILEA by 31st March 1991, and his discretionary power to undertake subsequent reviews. The amendments substitute a discretionary power to undertake a review by 31st March 1991. The amendments also delete the power to implement any changes in the light of a review by order. Such changes will therefore require fresh primary legislation.

The strongest objection to Clause 21, both in your Lordships' House and in another place, has been to the proposal that there should be a power for my right honourable friend to re-allocate the new ILEA's functions by order. We have listened carefully to the arguments, put with great strength and feeling in this House in particular, that if the new administrative structure which we are establishing for education in inner London needs adjustment in the light of experience, then that adjustment should be made by primary legislation.

On two points, however, the other place made further amendments to Clause 21. Those amendments are intended only to give full effect to those made in this House. First, the clause as amended by your Lordships retains a reference to "such report". There is now provision for only one report, of course, and Amendment No. 33 therefore substitutes a reference to "the report". Secondly, although this House deleted my right honourable friend's order-making power, references to that power remain in Clause 100. Amendments Nos. 35 and 36 delete these references.

I am sure that your Lordships will agree that these further amendments are sensible and necessary as well as being in line with the express wishes of your Lordships' House. I beg to move.

Moved, That the House do not insist in their Amendment No. 32, and do agree with the Commons on their Amendment No. 33 in lieu thereof; and that the House do agree with the Commons in their consequential Amendments Nos. 35 and 36.—(The Earl of Gowrie.)

Lord Campbell of Alloway

My Lords, from these Back-Benches may I express my gratitude to my noble friend the Minister for recognising the rectitude of primary legislation. This was the issue which arose between myself and the noble Baroness, Lady David, on which of course, as was inevitable, the noble Baroness was right and I was wrong. However, at least I had the right aspirations. Those aspirations have been recognised by my noble friend the Minister, and I am indeed grateful not only to him but to the noble Baroness.

On Question, Motion agreed to.