Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru

Yn ôl i Chwilio

Y Pwyllgor Materion Cyfansoddiadol a Deddfwriaethol

Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committee

24/06/2019

Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol

Committee Members in Attendance

Dai Lloyd AC
Mark Isherwood AC Yn dirprwyo ar ran Suzy Davies
Substitute for Suzy Davies
Mick Antoniw AC Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor
Committee Chair
Mike Hedges AC Yn dirprwyo ar ran Dawn Bowden
Substitute for Dawn Bowden

Swyddogion Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru a oedd yn bresennol

National Assembly for Wales Officials in Attendance

Gareth Howells Cynghorydd Cyfreithiol
Legal Adviser
Rachael Davies Dirprwy Glerc
Deputy Clerk
Rhiannon Lewis Cynghorydd Cyfreithiol
Legal Adviser
Sarah Sargent Ail Glerc
Second Clerk

Cofnodir y trafodion yn yr iaith y llefarwyd hwy ynddi yn y pwyllgor. Yn ogystal, cynhwysir trawsgrifiad o’r cyfieithu ar y pryd. Lle mae cyfranwyr wedi darparu cywiriadau i’w tystiolaeth, nodir y rheini yn y trawsgrifiad.

The proceedings are reported in the language in which they were spoken in the committee. In addition, a transcription of the simultaneous interpretation is included. Where contributors have supplied corrections to their evidence, these are noted in the transcript.

Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 14:30.

The meeting began at 14:30.

1. Cyflwyniad, ymddiheuriadau, dirprwyon a datgan buddiannau
1. Introduction, apologies, substitutions and declarations of interest

This is a meeting of the Constitutional and Legislative Affairs Committee. Item 1: I'll just start with the apologies we've had from Dawn Bowden, from Carwyn Jones and from Suzy Davies; Mark Isherwood will be standing in for her, and I welcome Mike Hedges here in place of Dawn Bowden. The usual housekeeping rules apply. Are there any declarations of interest? 

2. Offerynnau nad ydynt yn cynnwys materion i gyflwyno adroddiad arnynt o dan Reol Sefydlog 21.2 na 21.3
2. Instruments that raise no reporting issues under Standing Order 21.2 or 21.3

If there aren't, we'll then move on to item 2: instruments that raise no reporting issues under Standing Order 21.2 or 21.3. I'll deal with items 2.1, 2.2 and 2.3. These are the Civil Enforcement of Parking Contraventions (County Borough of Blaenau Gwent) Designation Order 2019; the Civil Enforcement of Parking Contraventions (County Borough and City of Newport) Designation Order 2019; and the same in respect of Torfaen. Now, these Orders all designate the areas described in the Schedules to the Orders as civil enforcement areas for parking contraventions and special enforcement areas for the purposes of Part 6 of the Traffic Management Act 2004. The Orders enable Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council, the Council of the County Borough and City of Newport, and Torfaen County Borough Council to enforce parking contraventions within the areas described in the Schedules through a civil law regime, as opposed to enforcement by police or traffic wardens in a criminal context. Are there any comments or observations? If there aren't, then we duly note those. 

3. Offerynnau sy'n cynnwys materion i gyflwyno adroddiad arnynt i’r Cynulliad o dan Reol Sefydlog 21.2 neu 21.3
3. Instruments that raise issues to be reported to the Assembly under Standing Order 21.2 or 21.3

We move on to item 3: instruments that raise issues to be reported to the Assembly under Standing Order 21.2 or 21.3—the School Performance and Absence Targets (Wales) (Amendment) Regulations 2019. You have before you a report, the regulations, the explanatory memorandum and the written statement. Now, these regulations amend the target-setting requirements in respect of key stage 4 pupils on school governing bodies in the School Performance and Absence Targets (Wales) Regulations 2011. I understand one technical point has been identified, and there is a written statement from the Minister. Over to you, Gareth. 

Only to note there's one technical point, noting the slight inconsistency in the citing of the enabling powers that allow the Welsh Ministers to make these regulations. The Government response agrees with the point raised, but confirms that doesn't have any effect on the legality or lawfulness of the regulations. 

4. Datganiadau ysgrifenedig o dan Reol Sefydlog 30C
4. Written statements under Standing Order 30C

If not, we'll move on to item 4, then, which is a written statement under Standing Order 30C: the Environment (Legislative Functions from Directives) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019. You have a statement and you have the commentary there. These are the regulations that amend a number of EU directives to transfer a series of legislative functions that are currently conferred upon the European Commission, to be exercisable instead by the Secretary of State and, in relation to matters devolved to Wales, the Welsh Ministers. The directives that are amended by the regulations deal with air quality, environmental noise, infrastructure for spatial information, marine and water quality. Gareth. 

The draft report simply notes there isn't much clarity around how these affect the Assembly's legislative competence, but, apart from that, the draft report suggests that the Minister's statement is correct in how it summarises the effect of these regulations. 

Can I just seek clarification, actually, that we're not going to lose any powers here?

That is our understanding, yes, but we've made a point that it isn't explicit on the face of the Welsh Minister's written statement that that is the case. But we don't think we do lose powers.

We could write and just get that confirmation and clarification from them. We could do that. 

5. Papurau i'w nodi
5. Papers to note

On to item 5: we have a letter from the Rt Hon David Lidington MP to Bruce Crawford MSP, and the letter of David Lidington is 11 June 2019. The letter relates to the parliamentary scrutiny of inter-governmental relations and common frameworks. It starts at pack-page 30. Just to note that correspondence. 

We move on to item 5.2, which is again a letter from the Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services of 18 June 2019. We're invited to note the letter, which provides further information in respect of some of the issues that we raised during the committee on the Children (Abolition of Defence of Reasonable Punishment) (Wales) Bill. In particular, I think it was the item relating to the burden of proof in respect of the defence. That has been outlined and explained, and I think it's quite clear from the correspondence. Any comments or observations on that? 

14:35

Okay, we'll move on to item 5.3, a letter from the Counsel General in relation to the Legislation (Wales) Bill. The letter was circulated to Members last week. Of course, Stage 3 of the proceedings on the Bill will take place in Plenary tomorrow. Any comments or observations? Noted? 

Okay. Then 5.4, a letter from the Minister for Education. Again, it's a letter relating to the Education (Student Support) (Postgraduate Master's Degrees) (Wales) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2019. This is about the provision, I think, of financial support to postgraduates. This will be laid on or around—well, today or tomorrow, I presume.

They have been laid today. 

These are a combination. Sometimes there is eligibility for loans and some students are eligible for grants as well. So, it will cover both, I think. 

And if it's a loan, it will have to be repaid under the same terms as people undertaking undergraduate degrees. 

We'll see what the regulations say in terms of how, if at all, they amend it, but I think that is the usual—. They're repayable on the same terms. 

I just have serious concerns about the amount of debt that is being built up, not just by individual students—and I can tell you that my daughter's one of them—but by the Government as a whole. Every second supplementary budget in the Finance Committee, we get an update on how much extra money has gone into that debt. At some stage, these debts will be written off. It's going to have a serious effect on the Westminster Government's budget, which eventually, in a roundabout sort of way, affects ours. 

I think those are matters that will arise either in the Finance Committee or education, and I think our concern is that these are the regulations that empower the provision. 

The next meeting, of course, is 1 July 2019, which is a 2.30 p.m. start.

That brings us to the end of this meeting, but I would like to carry on very shortly just go into private session. 

6. Cynnig o dan Reol Sefydlog 17.42 i benderfynu gwahardd y cyhoedd o’r cyfarfod
6. Motion under Standing Order 17.42 to resolve to exclude the public from the meeting

Cynnig:

bod y pwyllgor yn penderfynu gwahardd y cyhoedd o weddill y cyfarfod yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.42(vi).

Motion:

that the committee resolves to exclude the public from the remainder of the meeting in accordance with Standing Order 17.42(vi).

Cynigiwyd y cynnig.

Motion moved.

So, in accordance with Standing Order 17.42(vi), I invite the committee to resolve to exclude the public from the meeting. Do Members agree? 

Derbyniwyd y cynnig.

Daeth rhan gyhoeddus y cyfarfod i ben am 14:37.

Motion agreed.

The public part of the meeting ended at 14:37.

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