Crime and Courts Bill: Lords committee stage

14 November 2012

Lords took another day to look at the Crime and Courts Bill yesterday (Tuesday 13 November) to examine Schedules 16 and 17

Members of the Lords began by examining Schedule 16 which makes provision for courts to deal non-custodially with offenders.

Lord Rosser (Labour) moved Amendment 3, covering the promotion of rehabilitation, and said: ‘Can the minister tell us why the government decided not to make it a requirement on a court when making a community order to also include at least one requirement imposed for the purpose of rehabilitation unless there were exceptional circumstances... There is not even a requirement, I believe, for a court to consider including at least one requirement imposed for the purpose of rehabilitation.’

Lord McNally (Liberal Democrat) responded on behalf of the government by saying: ‘The whole thrust of what we are trying to do is to use community sentencing effectively, couple it with a real drive on rehabilitation, and also - and we think we have public support in this - use the element of punishment to drive home both the rehabilitation message and the punishment message.’

After the government responded Lord Rosser withdrew Amendment 3.

Other topics discussed in Schedule 16 included rehabilitation for female and young adult offenders, a code of practice for camera surveillance systems and the future of the probation service.

Discussion concluded after Schedule 17, which makes provision about deferred prosecution agreements.

The bill is scheduled for report stage, further scrutiny, 27 November.

About the Crime and Courts Bill

The bill was introduced in the House of Lords at its first reading stage (formal introduction) on 10 May. It aims to establish the National Crime Agency and suggests abolishing the Serious Organised Crime Agency and the National Policing Improvement Agency.

It also examines the structure, administration, proceedings and powers of courts and tribunals and addresses issues like border control and drugs and driving.

What is committee stage?

Detailed line by line examination of the separate parts (clauses and schedules) of the bill takes place during committee stage. Any member of the Lords can take part.

It usually starts no fewer than two weeks after the second reading and can last for one to eight days or more.

The day before committee stage starts, amendments (changes) are grouped into related subjects and placed in order - a marshalled list.

During committee stage every clause of the bill has to be agreed to and votes on the amendments can take place. All proposed amendments can be discussed and there is no time limit, or guillotine, on discussion of amendments.

What is report stage?

Report stage gives all members of the Lords further opportunity to examine and make changes, known as amendments, to a bill.

Report stage usually starts 14 days after committee stage. It can be spread over several days (but usually fewer days than at committee stage).

Before report stage starts, all member's amendments are recorded and published. The day before a report stage debate the amendments are placed in order - a marshalled list.

During report stage detailed line by line examination of the bill continues. Any member of the Lords can take part and votes can take place.

After report stage the bill is reprinted to include all the agreed amendments. The bill then moves to third reading for the final chance for the Lords to debate and amend the bill.

Previous Crime and Courts Bill news stories

Further information

Image: iStockphoto

More news on: Parliament, government and politics, Parliament, House of Lords news, Lords news, Bill news, Crime, civil law, justice and rights

Share this page