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Community Empowerment (Scotland) Act 2015

Representations etc. regarding circumstances affecting ballot results

112.Section 51 of the Act inserts a new section 51C into the 2003 Act which sets out a process for where a community body considers that circumstances have affected the ballot result.

113.Subsection (1) of the new section 51C allows the community body, within 14 days of receiving notification of the result of the ballot, to make representations to Ministers on circumstances that the community body considers impacted the ballot result.

114.Subsection (2) requires the community body to provide Ministers with such evidence as is reasonably necessary to establish the existence and effect of the circumstances that affected the ballot result. A copy of the evidence and representations must be sent to the owner of the land by the community body. Subsection (3) allows Ministers to request further information if required and the community body must respond within 7 days under subsection (4).

115.Subsection (5) provides that the owner of the land may provide comments in connection with the representations and evidence provided by the community body within 7 days of receiving copies of such representations and evidence. The owner of the land must send copies of any comments to the community body (subsection (6)). The community body may give their views to Ministers on the owner of the land’s comments (subsection (7)).

116.Subsection (8) provides that Ministers may request further information from the community body and, in terms of subsection (9), the community body must respond within 7 days.

117.Subsection (10) provides that Ministers must take account of any of the representations, evidence, information, comments or views which have been provided in this process when considering whether the ballot turnout requirement under section 51(2)(a) of the 2003 Act has been met.

118.Due to the administrative steps which have been provided for, section 51(2) of the Act amends section 51 of the 2003 Act to extend the length of the period in which Ministers must decide whether to consent to the exercise of the right to buy from 21 days to 35 days in cases where representations have been made under section 51C(1).

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