Section 82: Regulatory powers exercisable during postal administration
357.This section sets out the regulatory powers available to the Secretary of State during a postal administration.
358.Subsection (1) provides that the section applies only if a postal administration order has been made.
359.Subsections (2) and (3) provide that the Secretary of State can make an order to modify the universal postal order made by OFCOM under section 30 following consultation with OFCOM and anyone else the Secretary of State considers appropriate and under subsection (4), if such an order is made, the Secretary of State rather than OFCOM must notify the European Commission of the modification.
360.Subsections (5) and (6) provide that, in a special administration situation, the Secretary of State can amend the minimum requirements for the universal postal service in section 31. The order is subject to approval after being made (which means it must be laid before Parliament after being made and ceases to have effect unless it is approved by a resolution of each House of Parliament within 28 days – see section 89 for further details) and may include necessary or expedient consequential amendments to Part 3.
361.Subsection (7) provides that the Secretary of State can modify or revoke any regulatory condition on any postal operator if the Secretary of State considers it appropriate to do so for, or in connection with, achieving the objective of the postal administration.
362.Subsection (8) extends the power under subsection (7) to include the making of incidental, consequential or transitional modifications.
363.Subsection (9) requires the Secretary of State to consult the person whose condition is being modified or revoked, OFCOM and anyone else he thinks appropriate before making a modification.
364.Subsections (10) and (11) provide that any modification or revocation of a regulatory condition must be published by the Secretary of State in such a manner as the Secretary of State considers appropriate.
365.Subsection (12) provides that the provisions in Part 3 (including the duty to secure the provision of universal postal service) apply in relation to the modification or revocation by the Secretary of State of regulatory conditions, with the exception of paragraph 3 of Schedule 6 (which relates to the publication by OFCOM of modifications etc) and sections 57 to 60 (which relate to appeals). In a special administration situation, decisions by the Secretary of State modifying or revoking regulatory conditions would be subject to judicial review by the courts.
366.Subsection (13) provides that the power conferred by subsection (2) (to modify the universal postal order) or (5) (to amend section 31) may only be exercised when a postal administration order is in force.
367.Subsection (14) provides that any duty to consult under this section may be met by consultation that took place prior to the making of the postal administration order.