Section 3 – Duty to provide the police support services
12.Section 3 provides that in addition to establishing and maintaining the Agency, the Authority must provide the ‘police support services’ set out in subsection (2). These include all the common police services currently established and provided by the Scottish Ministers under section 36 of the Police (Scotland) Act 1967, namely the Scottish Police College, the Scottish Criminal Record Office and the Scottish Police Information Strategy; and also the police forensic science services. The Authority will also carry out the functions of the Scottish Ministers which are delegated to it by the Scottish Ministers under Part V of the Police Act 1997 in relation to issuing criminal record certificates.
13.Subsections (3) and (4) give the Authority flexibility in the ways in which it provides these services, so that it may establish organisations, may collaborate with other bodies, and may do anything incidental or ancillary to the provision of these services.
14.Subsections (5) and (6) make it clear that in all its activities the Authority must act in a way which is calculated to promote the efficiency and effectiveness of the police, having regard also to the contribution its services make to the efficiency and effectiveness of the wider criminal justice system.
15.Subsection (8) amends section 121 of the Police Act 1997 to provide that the functions of the Scottish Ministers under that Act in relation to the issuing of criminal record certificates (other than making regulations and orders) will be able to be carried out by the Authority.