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Welsh Statutory Instruments

2001 No. 605 (W. 28)

LOCAL GOVERNMENT, WALES

The Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (Electronic Communications) (Wales) Order 2001

Made

27th February 2001

Coming into force

1st April 2001

The National Assembly for Wales considers that the authorisation of the use of electronic communications by this order for any purpose, is such that the extent (if any) to which records of things done for that purpose will be available will be no less satisfactory in cases where use is made of electronic communications than in other cases. It therefore makes this Order in exercise of the powers given to it by section 8 and 10(2), (3)(d), (3)(e), (4) and (5) of the Electronic Communications Act 2000(1) with the consent of the Secretary of State:

Citation, commencement, application and interpretation

1.—(1) This Order may be cited as the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (Electronic Communications) (Wales) Order 2001 and shall come into force on 1st of April 2001.

(2) This Order applies to Wales only.

(3) In this Order,

Amendments to the 1989 Act

2.—(1) The amendments made to the 1989 Act by the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (Electronic Communications) (England) Order 2000 (3) as set out in the Schedule to this Order also apply to Wales.

(2) References to the Secretary of State in the amendments referred to in paragraph (1) are to be construed as references to the National Assembly for Wales.

Signed on behalf of the National Assembly for Wales under section 66(1) of the Government of Wales Act 1998(4).

D Elis Thomas

The Presiding Officer of the National Assembly

27th February 2001

I consent to this Order.

Paul Murphy

Secretary of State for Wales

27th February 2001

ARTICLE 2

SCHEDULEELECTRONIC COMMUNICATION OF FINAL DECISION ON AMOUNT OF HOUSING REVENUE ACCOUNT SUBSIDY

1.  In section 80A of the 1989 Act (5) (final decision on amount of Housing Revenue Account subsidy) after subsection (1), the following subsections are inserted —

(1A) Notification in writing of a decision under this section is to be taken as given to a local housing authority where notice of the decision is sent using electronic communications to such address as may for the time being be notified by that authority to the Secretary of State for that purpose.

(1B) Notification in writing of a decision under this section is also to be treated as given to a local housing authority where —

(a)the Secretary of State and that authority have agreed that notifications of decisions under this section required to be given in writing to that authority may instead be accessed by that authority on a web site;

(b)the decision is a decision to which that agreement applies;

(c)the Secretary of State has published the decision on a web site;

(d)that authority is notified, in a manner for the time being agreed for the purpose between it and the Secretary of State, of —

(i)the publication of the decision on a web site;

(ii)the address of that web site; and

(iii)the place on that web site where the notice may be accessed, and how it may be accessed.

(1C) A local housing authority which is no longer willing to accept electronic communications for the notification of decisions under this section, may withdraw a notification of an address given to the Secretary of State for the purposes of subsection (1A) above, and such a withdrawal shall take effect on a date specified by the authority being a date no less than one month after the date on which the authority informs the Secretary of State that it wants to withdraw the notification of the address given.

(1D) A local housing authority which has entered into an agreement with the Secretary of State under paragraph (a) of subsection (1B) above may revoke the agreement, and such revocation shall take effect on a date specified by the authority being a date no less than one month after the date on which the authority informs the Secretary of State that it wants to revoke the agreement..

Electronic transmission of determinations and directions

2.  In section 87 of the 1989 Act(6) (determinations and directions) after subsection (3), the following subsections are inserted —

(4) References in this section to sending to a local housing authority a copy of a determination under this Part include references to using electronic communications for sending a copy of a determination to such address as may for the time being be notified to the Secretary of State by that authority for that purpose.

(5) For the purposes of this section a copy of a determination under this Part is also to be treated as sent to a local housing authority where —

(a)the Secretary of State and that authority have agreed to the authority instead having access to determinations on a web site;

(b)the determination is a determination to which that agreement applies;

(c)he Secretary of State has published the determination on a web site;

(d)that authority is notified, in a manner for the time being agreed for the purpose between that authority and the Secretary of State, of —

(i)the publication of the determination on a web site;

(ii)the address of that web site; and

(iii)the place on that web site where then determination may be accessed, and how it may be accessed.

(6) A local housing authority which is no longer willing to accept electronic communications for the notification of decisions under this section, may withdraw a notification of an address given to the Secretary of State for the purposes of subsection (4) above, and such a withdrawal shall take effect on a date specified by the authority being a date no less than one month after the date on which the authority informs the Secretary of State that it wants to withdraw the notification of the address given.

(7) A local housing authority which has entered into an agreement with the Secretary of State under paragraph (a) of subsection (5) above may revoke the agreement, and such revocation shall take effect on a date specified by the authority being a date no less than one month after the date on which the authority informs the Secretary of State that it wants to revoke the agreement..

Construction and application of Part VI of the 1989 Act

3.  In section 88(1) of the 1989 Act —

(1) at the end of paragraph (c) “and” is deleted;

(2) after paragraph (d) the following is inserted —

; and

(e)“electronic communication” means a communication transmitted (whether from one person to another, from one device to another or from a person to a device or vice versa) —

(i)by means of a telecommunications system (within the meaning of the Telecommunications Act 1984)(7); or

(ii)by other means but while in an electronic form;

(f)“address”, in relation to electronic communications, includes any number or address used for the purposes of such communications..

Explanatory Note

(This note does not form part of the Order)

Section 8 of the Electronic Communications Act 2000 (“the 2000 Act”) confers a power on the appropriate Minister (as defined in sections 9(1) and 10(1) of the 2000 Act) to modify legislation for the purpose of authorising or facilitating the use of electronic communications or electronic storage.

Section 10 of the 2000 Act sets out the circumstances and the manner in which the Section 8 power is exercisable in relation to Wales by the National Assembly for Wales.

Sections 80A, 87 and 88 of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (“the 1989 Act”) are amended in so far as they relate to Wales by this Order. The functions of the Secretary of State under the 1989 Act (with certain exceptions) are exercisable in Wales by the National Assembly for Wales by virtue of the provisions of the National Assembly for Wales (Transfer of Functions) Order 1999. Consequently, all references in the amendments to the 1989 Act to the “Secretary of State” are therefore in effect (in Wales) to the National Assembly for Wales.

The amendments are made by applying to Wales the amendments to the 1989 Act made by the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 (Electronic Communications) (England) Order 2000 (SI 2000/3056). Those amendments are set out in the Schedule to this Order.

The effect of this Order is to amend section 80A of the 1989 Act to allow the National Assembly for Wales, to use electronic communications: —

The effect of this Order is also to amend section 87 of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989, to allow the Assembly:

This amendment also allows the National Assembly for Wales to discharge its obligation to send a copy of a determination to an authority by publishing the determination on a website and notifying the authority that it may be found there, and how it may be accessed there (if it has so agreed with the authority).

An authority which is no longer willing to accept electronic communication of a determination or decision may give notice of its withdrawal of notification of its address to which electronic communications may be sent, and of its revocation of an agreement that it may be notified by consulting a website. Such withdrawal or revocation shall take effect on a date specified by the authority which must be at least one month from the date on which notification of the withdrawal or revocation is given by the authority.

Finally, the effect of this Order is to amend section 88 of the 1989 Act by inserting definitions of “electronic communication” and “address” for the purposes of electronic communications.

(1)

2000 c. 7. For the definition of “the appropriate Minister” see sections 9(1) and 10(1).

(5)

Section 80A was inserted by paragraph 5 of Schedule 18 to the Housing Act 1996 (1996 c. 52). The Secretary of State’s functions under section 80A are exercisable in relation to Wales by the Assembly by virtue of the National Assembly for Wales (Transfer of Functions) Order 1999 (1999 No.672).

(6)

The Secretary of State’s functions under section 87 are exercisable in relation to Wales by the Assembly by virtue of The National Assembly for Wales (Transfer of Functions) Order 1999.