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Water Act 2003

Territorial Application: Wales

5.Various functions of the Secretary of State introduced or amended by the Act are devolved to be exercised by the National Assembly for Wales. This is achieved by section 100 of the Act amending the National Assembly for Wales (Transfer of Functions) Order 1999 (“The Transfer of Functions Order”) to take into account the new provisions introduced by the Act.

6.If a function is devolved by the way of the Transfer of Functions Order, the section of the Act only makes reference to the Secretary of State, and the section is to be interpreted as referring to the National Assembly for Wales in the manner or circumstances set out in the Transfer of Functions Order. Most of the provisions of the Act amend other legislation, such as the Reservoirs Act 1975, the Water Industry Act 1991 or the Water Resources Act 1991, and the Transfer of Functions Order makes the division of functions in different ways for different Acts. The relevant provision for devolution purposes will be the amended section of the relevant Act.

7.One of the reasons for devolution being put into effect in different ways depending in different Acts is that the areas of appointment of water and sewerage undertakers do not follow the geographical boundary of England and Wales. Accordingly, when considering the functions of water and sewerage undertakers, the jurisdiction of the Secretary of State and the National Assembly for Wales is generally determined by the undertakers’ areas of appointment, rather than the national boundary.

8.The Act has been drafted in consultation and agreement with the Welsh Assembly Government and the Wales Office so that it applies to both England and Wales.

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