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Police Reform Act 2002

Section 93: Quorum for the Service Authorities under the 1997 Act

448.This section replaces the quorum for the NCIS and NCS Service Authorities as set out in paragraph 4(1) of Schedule 2A to the Police Act 1997 (Schedule 2A was introduced by Schedule 6 to the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001). The quorum provisions of the 2001 Act have not been brought into effect.

449.The quorum introduced in the 2001 Act replaced a simple quorum of one quarter of the membership. This was contained in Schedule 1 to the Police Act 1997 (Provisions in relation to the NCIS Service Authority) Order 1998 (SI 1998/63), which introduced provisions analogous to those applying to police authorities. That was repealed as a consequence of the repeal of section 44 of the 1997 Act.

450.The quorum currently in the 2001 Act requires the attendance of at least one ACPO member and at least one APA member, as well as an independent member appointed by the Secretary of State. The problem is that there is only one ACPO member and one APA member on the new NCIS Service Authority. If either one were absent, the effectiveness of the Service Authority would be seriously impeded, as it would not be able to conduct any formal business. The effect on the NCS Service Authority is less serious, because it has two ACPO and two APA members.

451.The quorum introduced in this Act will require a minimum of four members to be present (of a membership of 11). Of the four, at least one must be, under new paragraph (1A)(a), a person appointed by the Secretary of State (an independent member) and at least two others must be, under new paragraph (1A)(b), core members, but not Crown Servants appointed under paragraph 6 or 6A of Schedule 1 to the 1997 Act by the Secretary of State or a customs officer. The common core membership of the two service authorities is eight strong and comprises: 3 or 4 independent members (including the Chairman) appointed by the Secretary of State, 1 or 2 (depending on the number of independent members) Crown Servants appointed by the Secretary of State, 1 chief police officer, 1 member of a police authority, and 1 customs officer.

452.Paragraph 4(1) of Schedule 2A to the Police Act 1997 was not brought into effect with other provisions introduced by Schedule 6 to the Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001. Consequently there has been no statutory quorum for the Service Authorities since April 2002, when the new Authorities started work, but appropriate interim measures were introduced in the standing orders of the Service Authorities to cover the period up until the provisions contained in this section are brought into effect.

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