HL Deb 18 July 1994 vol 557 cc37-8

38 Clause 73, page 40, line 37, after 'requires' insert 'in accordance with section 34B of that Act as a justices' clerk'

The Lord Chancellor

My Lords, I beg to move that the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 38. In moving this amendment I should like to speak also to Amendments Nos. 39 to 45, 103, 106, 111, 112, 114 and 128 to 130. All of these amendments relate to the inner London magistrates' courts service and have been discussed with its representatives.

Amendments Nos. 39 to 42 are technical amendments which improve on the drafting of a government amendment, which was introduced in this House during the Third Reading, without changing the policy. That matter was raised primarily by the noble Earl, Lord Russell, at a fairly late stage in the proceedings in your Lordships' House. We were able to give effect to some of the concerns while the Bill was still in this House.

Amendments Nos. 38 and 106 address special procedural features in the inner London area. Justices' clerks for the youth courts and family proceeding courts in inner London are not to be appointed to a petty sessional division within the inner London area, but to the inner London area and the City of London. This amendment makes provision for the present arrangements to continue to operate, consistent with the other provisions of the Bill relating to justices' clerks.

Amendments Nos. 43 and 44 establish a convenient and manageable system of selection for lay magistrate members of the division of work committee of the inner London magistrates' courts committee area.

One of the effects of the Bill is to bring the arrangements for the funding of the inner London magistrates' courts service into line with the arrangements in place elsewhere in England and Wales, by severing its links with the Receiver of the Metropolitan Police. This has implications for the pension arrangements of staff employed in the inner London service. The effect of Amendments Nos. 45, 103, 112 and 114 is to allow for the present arrangements to continue until such time as the best pension arrangements can be made. This includes ensuring that the pension expectations of staff will be fulfilled.

Amendments Nos. 111 and 128 to 130 are technical amendments consequential upon disengaging the Receiver.

Moved, That the House do agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 38.—(The Lord Chancellor.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.

4.15 p.m.