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Rating and Valuation (Amendment) (Scotland) Act 1984

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

5(1)Subject to subsections (1A)(b) and (3) below, if the Secretary of State is satisfied—

(a)that a local authority or a joint board have failed to achieve or maintain a reasonable standard in the discharge of any of their functions, regard being had to the standards maintained by other authorities and boards which are, in the opinion of the Secretary of State, of a similar type to the local authority or, as the case may be, joint board concerned ; or

(b)that the expenditure of any local authority or joint board has been excessive and unreasonable, regard being had to the financial and other relevant circumstances of the area or areas concerned ; or

(c)subject to subsection (1A)(b) below, that in respect of any local authority the total estimated expenses mentioned in section 108(2) of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973 are excessive and unreasonable, regard being had to the financial and other relevant circumstances of the area of the authority ;

and is of opinion that by reason of the failure or the excessive and unreasonable expenditure or estimated expenses a reduction should be made in the amount of any element of rate support grant payable to the local authority or a constituent authority of the joint board, as the case may be, he may, after affording to the local or constituent authority in question an opportunity of making representations, make and cause to be laid before Parliament a report stating the amount of and the reasons for the proposed reduction and setting out any representations made by the authority with respect to the proposed reduction.

(1A)In determining, for the purposes of paragraph (c) of subsection (1) above, whether, in relation to any year, total estimated expenses of a local authority are excessive and unreasonable the Secretary of State—

(a)may (in addition to the matters to which in terms of that paragraph regard must be had) have regard—

(i)to expenditure or estimated expenses, in that or any preceding year, of other local authorities which the Secretary of State is satisfied are .closely comparable (or as closely comparable as is practicable) with the local authority concerned ;

(ii)to general economic conditions ; and

(iii)to such other financial, economic, demographic, geographical and like criteria as he considers appropriate ; and

(b)may leave out of account such categories of estimated expenses as he thinks fit; and different such categories may be left out of account according to whether the proposed reduction under this section is of a rate or of the amount of an element of rate support grant.

(2)The Secretary of State may make regulations, subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament, for prescribing standards and general requirements in relation to any function of a local authority ; and in determining for the purposes of subsection (1) of this section whether there has been such a failure as is there mentioned, regard shall be had to any such regulations and any other standards or requirements imposed by or under any enactment.

(3)Where the Secretary of State is satisfied as is mentioned in paragraph (c) of subsection (1), as read with subsection (1A), above, he may in his report under the said subsection (1), instead of or in addition to proposing a reduction in the amount of an element of rate support grant, propose a reduction in the rate determined by the local authority; and the provisions of the said subsection (1) shall apply to the amount of, reasons for and representations with respect to, the proposed reduction in rate as they apply to a proposed reduction in the amount of such element.

(4)If a report under subsection (1) above is approved by the Commons House of Parliament and contains a proposal—

(a)to reduce an element of rate support grant, the Secretary of State may reduce that element by an amount not exceeding the amount of the reduction proposed ;

(b)that there should be a reduction in the rate determined by the authority to which the report relates, the authority shall forthwith determine under this paragraph a new rate less, by the proposed reduction in the rate or by such smaller amount as the Secretary of State may agree, than the rate determined by them under section 108 of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973:

Provided that where, for any reason whatsoever, by the twenty-eighth day after the approval under this section of a report an authority have not made a determination required, in relation to that report, by paragraph (b) above the authority shall be deemed to have determined on that day a rate under the paragraph such that the reduction proposed under subsection (3) above by the Secretary of State is effected.

(5)If an authority determine a rate under paragraph (b) of subsection (4) above, or are deemed by virtue of the proviso to that subsection to have determined such a rate, that rate and not the rate determined under the said section 108 shall be their regional, general or district rate, as the case may be, for the financial year and shall be levied (and the rights and liabilities of ratepayers shall be construed) accordingly.

(5A)A report under subsection (1) above may relate to more than one local authority and, if a report so relating is approved by a resolution of the Commons House of Parliament, subsections (4) and (5) above shall, with the necessary modifications, apply in relation to the report.

(6)The Secretary of State may by order under this subsection repeal or amend any enactment (including this Act) in so far as that enactment relates to the determination, levy or payment of a regional, general or district rate and such determination, levy or payment is affected by a determination (or deemed determination) under paragraph (b) of subsection (4) above.

(7)An order made under subsection (6) above shall have not effect until approved by resolution of each House of Parliament

(8)A reference in this Act (except this section) and in any other enactment (except subsection (1) of the said section 108) whether passed before or after the passing of this Act, to such rates as are determined under the said section 108 shall be construed as including a reference to such rates as are determined, or are deemed to have been determined under paragraph (b) of subsection (4) above.

(9)Section 19 of the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Scotland) Act 1981 (which among other things empowers the Secretary of State to make certain estimates where a local authority fail to supply him timeously with information) shall apply for the purposes of such of the Secretary of State's functions under this section as do not relate to rate support grants as it applies for the purposes of those which do.

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