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The Representation of the People (Combination of Polls) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2015

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Statutory Instruments

2015 No. 654

Representation Of The People, England And Wales

The Representation of the People (Combination of Polls) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2015

Made

9th March 2015

Coming into force

7th May 2015

The Lord President of the Council, in exercise of the powers conferred by section 15(5) of the Representation of the People Act 1985(1) and sections 9HE(1)(a), (2)(d) and (3)(a), 9MG(2) to (4) and 44(1)(a), (2)(d) and (3)(a) of the Local Government Act 2000(2), makes the following Regulations.

The Lord President of the Council has consulted the Electoral Commission as required by sections 9HE(4) and 44(3A)(3) of the Local Government Act 2000 and section 7(1) and (2)(e) of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000(4).

Having regard to section 27(2) of the Representation of the People Act 1985 and in accordance with section 201(2) of the Representation of the People Act 1983(5) and section 105(6)(6) of the Local Government Act 2000, a draft of this instrument has been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament.

Citation, commencement and extent

1.—(1) These Regulations may be cited as the Representation of the People (Combination of Polls) (England and Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2015 and come into force on 7th May 2015.

(2) These Regulations extend to England and Wales only.

Amendment to the Representation of the People (Combination of Polls) (England and Wales) Regulations 2004

2.—(1) Paragraph 22 of Schedule 2 to the Representation of the People (Combination of Polls) (England and Wales) Regulations 2004(7) is amended as follows.

(2) For the substituted paragraph (1AB) for rule 45 of the parliamentary elections rules substitute—

(1AB) The returning officer shall count the votes given on the ballot papers used at the parliamentary election, but shall not count—

(a)the votes given on postal ballot papers until the proceedings under paragraph (1)(c) and (d) above have been completed in relation to those papers and they have been mixed with the ballot papers from at least one ballot box; or

(b)the votes given on ballot papers from a ballot box until the proceedings under paragraph (1)(a), (b) and (d) have been completed in relation to those papers and they have been mixed with the ballot papers from at least one other box.

(3) For the substituted paragraph (1AC)(c) for rule 45 of the parliamentary elections rules substitute—

(c)count the votes given on the ballot papers, but shall not count—

(i)the votes given on postal ballot papers until they have been mixed with the ballot papers from at least one ballot box; or

(ii)the votes given on ballot papers from a ballot box until they have been mixed with the ballot papers from at least one other ballot box.

3.  After paragraph 24 of Schedule 2 to the Representation of the People (Combination of Polls) (England and Wales) Regulations 2004, insert—

24A.  In rule 50 (declaration of result), after paragraph (2) insert—

(3) But the returning officer shall not declare a candidate to be elected under paragraph (1) or (2)—

(a)in a case where the returning officer discharges the functions specified in Regulation 5 of the Combination of Polls Regulations, until after the returning officer has completed proceedings under rule 45(1) (as substituted by Regulation 8 of those Regulations);

(b)in a case where the returning officer does not discharge the functions specified in Regulation 5 of the Combination of Polls Regulations, until after proceedings corresponding to those mentioned in sub-paragraph (a) have been completed by the returning officer who does discharge those functions (“the other returning officer”).

(4) The corresponding proceedings referred to in paragraph (3)(b) are proceedings under provision corresponding to rule 45(1) (as substituted by Regulation 8 of the Combination of Polls Regulations) made by or under any enactment in relation to the election or referendum at which the other returning officer has functions.

Signed by the authority of the Lord President of the Council

Sam Gyimah

Minister for the Constitution

Cabinet Office

9th March 2015

EXPLANATORY NOTE

(This note is not part of the Regulations)

These Regulations amend Schedule 2 to the Representation of the People (Combination of Polls) (England and Wales) Regulations 2004 (“the Combination of Polls Regulations”), which sets out modifications to the Parliamentary Elections Rules that have effect when a poll at a parliamentary election is combined with a poll at another election or referendum.

Regulation 2 makes amendments to paragraph 22 of Schedule 2, which modifies rule 45 of the Parliamentary Elections Rules, in relation to the count.

Regulation 2(2) provides that, where a parliamentary election is combined with another election or referendum, the returning officer at the parliamentary election may begin the count of the votes given on parliamentary ballot papers once they have been verified, separated from the ballot papers relating to the other elections and referendums and mixed with the ballot papers from at least one other ballot box or, in the case of postal ballot papers, with the ballot papers from at least one ballot box.

This will enable the count to begin before completion of the proceedings in rule 45(1) of the Parliamentary Elections Rules, as substituted by paragraph 22 of Schedule 2.

Regulation 3 inserts new paragraph 24A into Schedule 2, which modifies rule 50 of the Parliamentary Elections Rules, in relation to declaration of result. It provides that the returning officer must not declare the result of the count until the proceedings in rule 45(1), as substituted by paragraph 22 of Schedule 2, have been completed.

For the application of these Regulations to elections of Police and Crime Commissioners, see the Police and Crime Commissioner Elections Order 2015.

A full regulatory impact assessment has not been produced for this instrument because no impact on the private, voluntary or public sectors is foreseen.

(1)

1985 c.50. The power conferred on the Secretary of State by section 15(5) was made exercisable concurrently by the Lord President of the Council and the Secretary of State by the Lord President of the Council Order 2010 (S.I. 2010/1837).

(2)

2000 c.22. Sections 9HE and 9MG were inserted by section 21 of and paragraph 1 of Schedule 2 to the Localism Act 2011 (c.20). The powers conferred on the Secretary of State were made exercisable concurrently by the Lord President of the Council and the Secretary of State by S.I. 2010/1837 and the Transfer of Functions (Elections and Referendums) Order 2013 (S.I. 2013/2597).

(3)

Section 44(3A) was inserted by the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 (c.41), Schedule 21, paragraph 18(1) and (2).

(5)

1983 c.2. Section 201(2) was substituted by section 24 of and paragraph 69 of Schedule 4 to the Representation of the People Act 1985 and amended by section 158 of and paragraph 6 of Schedule 21 to the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 and S.I. 1991/222.

(6)

Section 105(6) was amended by section 100 of and paragraphs 11 and 14 of Schedule 3 to the Local Government Act 2003 (c.26) and sections 22 and 237 of, paragraphs 8 and 70 of Schedule 3 to, paragraphs 7 and 52 of Schedule 4 to, and Schedule 25 to the Localism Act 2011.

(7)

S.I. 2004/294; paragraph 22 was amended by S.I. 2006/3278 and S.I. 2014/920.

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