At Report Stage in the House of Lords, a new clause 17 (now 18) was inserted into the Bill by Opposition amendment. At Third Reading Government committed to bring forward a replacement clause that ultimately achieves the same effect, while addressing the concerns expressed regarding the current clause.
The Government is now publishing its draft replacement clause 18 . Lord Mandelson has written to Jeremy Hunt and Don Foster setting out Government’s concerns with the current clause and explaining the draft amendment.
The Government proposes to introduce this amendment immediately after Second Reading in the House of Commons. The Government believes that the amendment delivers the effect that the House of Lords wanted to achieve when it voted clause 18 into the Bill, but in a way that takes account of the legal and other concerns to which the clause gives rise.