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Local Government and Elections (Wales) Act 2021

Section 46 - Electronic broadcasts of meetings of certain local authorities

238.Section 46(1) requires principal councils to make, and publish, arrangements that ensure that the proceedings of certain types of council meeting are broadcast electronically in a way that allows members of the public, not in attendance, to see and hear proceedings. The proceedings must be broadcast live (subject to any exceptions that may be specified in regulations) and they must be available electronically after the meeting for a period specified in regulations.

239.Subsection (2) specifies the types of council meeting to which the duty to make arrangements applies. It only applies to meetings, or parts of meetings that are open to the public. And the only type of meeting to which it applies by direct operation of the subsection is a meeting of a principal council, which means meetings of the full council (subsection (2)(a)).

240.The duty may be extended to meetings of bodies operating within the council by the Welsh Ministers specifying such bodies in regulations (subsection (2)(a) and subsection (4)).

241.The types of body that may be specified are :

  • the executive of a principal council;

  • a committee or sub-committee of the executive of a principal council;

  • a committee or sub-committee of a principal council;

  • a joint committee or a sub-committee of a joint committee of two or more principal councils.

242.Subsection (3) enables the Welsh Ministers to make regulations including further provision in connection with the electronic broadcast of meetings of a principal council or a body specified in regulations under subsection (2).

243.Subsection (6) requires a principal council to have regard to guidance made by the Welsh Ministers about its duty to make and publish arrangements under subsection (1).

244.Subsection (8) gives the Welsh Ministers a wide power to require the electronic broadcast of the meetings of other specific bodies, including by way of amendment, revocation or repeal of primary and secondary legislation. The power is exercisable by regulations.

245.The bodies that may be made subject to such requirements are:

  • fire and rescue authorities for an area in Wales,

  • National Park authorities for a National Park in Wales,

  • a joint committee of one or more principal councils and one or more fire and rescue authorities or National Park authorities, or

  • a joint board which is constituted under any enactment as a body corporate and discharges functions of two or more principal councils.

246.All regulations under this section must be approved by Senedd Cymru before being made (see section 174(5)(d)).

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