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Environmental Better Regulation Act (Northern Ireland) 2016

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

Rewriting powers of entry

This section has no associated Explanatory Notes

9.—(1) The Department, by regulations, may rewrite (with or without modifications)—

(a)powers of entry or associated powers contained in any statutory provision under which it has any function or any aspects of any such powers;

(b)offences connected with the exercise of any such powers, including (but not limited to) offences of—

(i)obstructing a person in the exercise of a power of entry or associated power;

(ii)failing or refusing to provide facilities, assistance or information to a person exercising a power of entry or associated power; and

(iii)falsely pretending to be a person authorised to exercise a power of entry or associated power; or

(c)statutory provisions relating to, or connected with, any such powers or aspects.

(2) The power under subsection (1) to rewrite a power of entry or associated power includes—

(a)the power to remove an aspect of such a power without replacing it; and

(b)the power to attach an offence of a kind mentioned in subsection (1)(b) to the exercise of such a power even if such an offence did not exist in relation to that power immediately before the changes made by the regulations.

(3) The power under subsection (1) to rewrite an offence connected with the exercise of a power of entry or associated power includes the power to provide for the offence to be—

(a)triable only summarily or either summarily or on indictment;

(b)punishable on summary conviction by—

(i)imprisonment for a term not exceeding such period as is specified (which must not exceed 3 months);

(ii)a fine not exceeding such amount as is specified (which must not exceed level 5 on the standard scale for an offence that is triable only summarily or the statutory maximum for an offence that is triable summarily or on indictment); or

(iii)both; or

(c)punishable on conviction on indictment by—

(i)imprisonment for a term not exceeding such period as is specified (which must not exceed 2 years); or

(ii)a fine; or

(iii)both.

(4) Subsection (3) applies irrespective of whether the mode of trial provided for the offence is different to the mode of trial, or the penalty provided for the offence is greater or lesser than the penalty, applicable to the offence immediately before the changes made by the regulations.

(5) But regulations under this section may not alter the effect of—

(a)a power of entry or associated power; or

(b)any safeguard relating to, but not forming part of, such a power—

unless, on or after the changes made by the regulations, the safeguards in relation to the power, taken together, provide a greater level of protection than any safeguards applicable immediately before the changes.

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