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The Wasp
Mr Raccoon

Protection of Freedoms Bill – Repealing powers of entry.

With the Protection of Freedoms Bill nearing it’s final stage in the Lords, I thought I would have a quick look to see just how many of the 1000 plus current powers of entry would actually be revoked (full list here courtesy of The Daily Mail).

Unfortunately, for those expecting something substantial from our coagulation masters, the full schedule of powers to be repealed included in the Bill itself is somewhat laughable considering the explosion of powers in recent years :

  • Omit section 50 of the Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 (power in
    relation to England and Wales to enter and inspect canal boats).
  • Omit section 258(4) of the Merchant Shipping Act 1995 (power of surveyor
    of ships etc. to enter premises to determine whether provisions or water
    intended for UK ships, including government ships, would be in accordance
    with safety regulations).
  • Section 108(15) of the Environment Act 1995 (powers of entry etc. of persons
    authorised by enforcing authorities: interpretation) is amended
  • Omit regulation 5 of the Dairy Herd Conversion Premium Regulations 1973
    (power of authorised officer to enter land to inspect livestock in respect of
    which a premium has been applied for etc.).
  • Omit section 2(1) of the Milk (Cessation of Production) Act 1985 (powers of
    entry in connection with compensation payments).
  • Omit regulation 8 of the Cereals Co-responsibility Levy Regulations 1988
    (power of authorised officer to enter premises used in relation to cereals).
  • Omit regulation 5 of the Oilseeds Producers (Support System) Regulations
    1992 (power of authorised officer to enter and inspect oilseeds producers’
    premises).
  • Omit regulation 5 of the Older Cattle (Disposal) (England) Regulations 2005
    (power of inspector to enter premises for the purposes of ensuring that
    regulations are being complied with).
  • Omit regulation 6 of the Salmonella in Turkey Flocks and Slaughter Pigs
    (Survey Powers) (England) Regulations 2006 (power of inspector to enter a
    turkey holding or slaughterhouse for purposes relating to salmonella).
  • Omit article 22 of the Distribution of German Enemy Property (No 1) Order
    1950 (power of constable to enter premises under warrant to search for and
    seize German enemy property).
  • Omit section 4 of the Hypnotism Act 1952 (constable’s power to enter
    5premises where entertainment is held if there is reasonable cause to believe
    that there is a contravention of the Act).
  • Omit section 8(2) of the Landlord and Tenant Act 1985 (power of landlord to
    enter premises to view their state and condition).
  • Omit regulation 24(6) of the Gas Appliances (Safety) Regulations 1995
    (power of authorised officer to enter premises for the purposes of
    surveillance of manufacturer’s compliance with requirements).
  • Omit paragraph 2(2)(a), (b) and (c) of Schedule 2 to the Cross-border
    Railway Services (Working Time) Regulations 2008 (power of Office of Rail
    Regulation’s inspector to enter premises for the purpose of carrying the
    regulations into effect).
  • Omit regulation 83 of the Payment Services Regulations 2009 (power of an
    officer of the Financial Services Authority to enter premises used in relation
    to payment services).

And that is it  – nice to see they have spent their time wisely and that the other thousand or so powers will only be subjected to this piece of weasel wording :

The bill also places a duty on secretaries of state to review the powers of entry they are responsible for and report back to Parliament, following the necessary detailed analysis, within two years following royal assent.

The purpose of the review will be to examine each individual power to determine whether or not it is still required or whether it should be repealed, safeguards added to it or consolidated with other, similar, powers so reducing the overall number.

Also known as, kick it into the long grass and pretend it was never brought up in the first place!

As an aside, I am left wondering if some member has a few articles in the attic from their wartime days which they need to flog to fund the old estate (hint, it’s one of the ones in bold above).

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4 comments to Protection of Freedoms Bill – Repealing powers of entry.

  • I spelt my own name wrong then ??

    • Wasp

      Bucko – yes, you did but the miracle of editor rights soon saw to that 🙂

  • They should have repealed the lot then waited two years and decided which ones they needed.

    Thay whole ‘Great repeal bill’ did my head in too. Why ask us which of Labours many laws we want repealed? Just repeal the lot of them!
    Bucko´s last blog post ..Saturday (I don’t want to blog about politics) night

    • Wasp

      Bucko – they could do a lot of sensible things but I have come to the conclusion that they just say nice things to keep everyone quite whilst continuing to add to the statute books. There should be something like a one in three out policy on new laws where they have to identify un-needed legislation to be removed before anything new can be added. Statutory Instruments should be scrapped as they are an underhand way of making up the law after the event. Most imporntatly, I think all legislation should have a sunset clause requiring a full vote at a pre determined time to keep it active – something like this is being introduced into new SI’s whereby the relevant secretary of state has to produce a report on the effectiveness of the legislation every five years but why not just do it right and limit all laws to a set period unless extended?