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Northern Ireland (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act 2006

Section 3: Timing of canvass

32.This section inserts new section 10ZA into the 1983 Act. The new section provides for a canvass to take place in 2010 and every tenth year following 2010. However, the Secretary of State may make an order cancelling the 2010 canvass if the following conditions are met: first, the CEO has made a recommendation by 15th April 2010 against a canvass being conducted in that year; and second, the Secretary of State is satisfied that the public interest does not require a canvass. Both the CEO and the Secretary of State, in making their decisions, must have reference to the registration objectives set out in new provisions inserted by section 4. An order cancelling the 2010 canvass may only be made if it is laid in draft before, and approved by, both Houses of Parliament.

33.The section provides that if no canvass is held under the new provisions by the end of 2015, a canvass must be held in 2016.

34.In intervening years (which are all years other than: 2010; every tenth year after 2010; and, if no canvass is held before the end of 2015, 2016) a canvass may be held provided the following conditions are satisfied. The first condition is that the CEO makes a recommendation to the Secretary of State, by 15th April of that year, in favour of a canvass being conducted for the purpose of meeting the registration objectives. The second condition is that the Secretary of State is satisfied that the public interest requires a canvass.

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