Section 127: Overview and scrutiny committees: consequential amendments
328.Section 21 of the Local Government Act 2000 requires local authorities operating executive arrangements to ensure that their overview and scrutiny committee has certain powers. Where a local authority has more than one overview and scrutiny committee, that obligation can be satisfied by ensuring that those committees have those powers between them. Subsection (1) amends section 21 of the Local Government Act 2000 so that the reference to overview and scrutiny committees also includes any joint overview and scrutiny committees. Subsection (1) provides that a joint overview and scrutiny committee means:
a joint overview and scrutiny committee within the meaning given in subsection (2)(a) and (b) of section 245 of the National Health Service Act 2006.
a joint overview and scrutiny committee within the meaning given in subsection (2)(a) and (b) of section 185 of the National Health Service (Wales) Act 2006; or
a joint overview and scrutiny committee within the meaning of section 123 of the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007.
329.Section 21(4) of the Local Government Act 2000 provides that, subject to 21(5), an overview and scrutiny committee of a local authority may not discharge any functions other than its functions under that section.
330.Subsection (1) of section 127 also amends section 21(4) of the Local Government Act 2000 to add into the list of functions which an overview and scrutiny committee may exercise, functions under section 21A to 21C or any functions conferred on it through regulations under 21E.
331.Section 32 of the Local Government Act 2000 enables the Secretary of State to establish arrangements for local authorities to discharge their functions without having a separate executive (i.e. for those local authorities operating alternative arrangements). Subsection (2) replaces section 32(3) of the Local Government Act 2000 with a new subsection (3) which amplifies the current provision under that section, so that the Secretary of State may make regulations for councils operating alternative arrangements, which may include similar provision to that provided for in this Act for overview and scrutiny committees. It also splits the powers of the Secretary of State into powers which he may exercise in relation to England and powers which the Welsh Ministers may exercise in relation to Wales.
332.Subsection (3) also makes consequential amendments to section 245(3)(b) of the National Health Service Act 2006 so that the Secretary of State may, by regulations, apply the revised overview and scrutiny provisions to joint health overview and scrutiny committees established under regulations under that section. Subsection (4) makes equivalent provision for Wales.