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Y Pwyllgor Cydraddoldeb, Llywodraeth Leol a Chymunedau

Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee

02/10/2020

Aelodau'r Pwyllgor a oedd yn bresennol

Committee Members in Attendance

Caroline Jones MS
Dawn Bowden MS
Delyth Jewell MS
Huw Irranca-Davies MS
John Griffiths MS Cadeirydd y Pwyllgor
Committee Chair
Mark Isherwood MS

Y rhai eraill a oedd yn bresennol

Others in Attendance

Cath Wyatt Llywodraeth Cymru
Welsh Government
Julie James MS Y Gweinidog Tai a Llywodraeth Leol
Minister for Housing and Local Government

Swyddogion y Senedd a oedd yn bresennol

Senedd Officials in Attendance

Catherine Hunt Ail Glerc
Second Clerk
Naomi Stocks Clerc
Clerk
Yan Thomas Dirprwy Glerc
Deputy Clerk

Cynnwys

Contents

1. Cyflwyniadau, Ymddiheuriadau, Dirprwyon a Datgan Buddiannau 1. Introductions, Apologies, Substitutions and Declarations of Interest
2. Bil Llywodraeth Leol ac Etholiadau (Cymru): Trafodion Cyfnod 2 2. Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill: Stage 2 Proceedings
3. Grŵp 1: Cymhwystra i bleidleisio mewn etholiadau Llywodraeth Leol (Gwelliannau 228, 157, 158, 229, 3, 4, 230, 159, 5, 6, 78, 226) 3. Group 1: Eligibility to vote in Local Government elections (Amendments 228, 157, 158, 229, 3, 4, 230, 159, 5, 6, 78, 226)
4. Grŵp 2: Systemau pleidleisio ar gyfer etholiadau Llywodraeth Leol (Gwelliannau 257, 160, 161, 258, 259, 162, 260, 163, 164, 165, 166, 7, 8, 167, 261, 231, 168, 262, 92, 93, 169, 170, 263, 222, 296, 223, 297, 156, 255) 4. Group 2: Voting system for Local Government elections (Amendments 257, 160, 161, 258, 259, 162, 260, 163, 164, 165, 166, 7, 8, 167, 261, 231, 168, 262, 92, 93, 169, 170, 263, 222, 296, 223, 297, 156, 255)
5. Grŵp 3: Trefniadau etholiadol—amrywiol (Gwelliannau 9, 10, 238, 252, 79, 221, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 253, 251, 254, 225) 5. Group 3: Electoral arrangements—miscellaneous (Amendments 9, 10, 238, 252, 79, 221, 80, 81, 82, 83, 84, 253, 251, 254, 225)
6. Grŵp 4: Cofrestru i bleidleisio yn etholiadau Llywodraeth Leol (Gwelliannau 11, 12, 13, 14, 264, 232, 171, 172, 224, 1, 227, 256) 6. Group 4: Registration to vote in Local Government elections (Amendments 11, 12, 13, 14, 264, 232, 171, 172, 224, 1, 227, 256)
7. Grŵp 5: Cymhwystra i sefyll mewn etholiadau Llywodraeth Leol (Gwelliannau 173, 174, 234, 15, 16, 175, 235) 7. Group 5: Eligibility to stand at Local Government elections (Amendments 173, 174, 234, 15, 16, 175, 235)
8. Grŵp 6: Sefydlu cyd-bwyllgorau corfforedig a’u swyddogaethau (Gwelliannau 94, 152, 153, 154, 97, 98, 281, 99, 100, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 282, 283, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 120, 121, 122, 286, 123, 124, 287, 213, 214, 145, 155) 8. Group 6: Establishing Corporate Joint Committees and their functions (Amendments 94, 152, 153, 154, 97, 98, 281, 99, 100, 102, 103, 104, 105, 106, 107, 282, 283, 108, 109, 110, 111, 112, 120, 121, 122, 286, 123, 124, 287, 213, 214, 145, 155)
9. Grŵp 7: Cynlluniau treialu ar gyfer etholiadau (Gwelliannau 17, 18, 2) 9. Group 7: Election pilots (Amendments 17, 18, 2)
10. Grŵp 8: Swyddogion Canlyniadau (Gwelliannau 236, 265) 10. Group 8: Returning Officers (Amendments 236, 265)
11. Grŵp 9: Dogfennau mewn perthynas ag etholiadau Llywodraeth Leol (Gwelliannau 237, 176) 11. Group 9: Documents relating to Local Government elections (Amendments 237, 176)
12. Grŵp 10: Pŵer Cymhwysedd Cyffredinol (Gwelliannau 266, 267, 19) 12. Group 10: General Power of Competence (Amendments 266, 267, 19)
13. Grŵp 11: Cynghorau cymuned cymwys (Gwelliannau 177, 20, 178, 179) 13. Group 11: Eligible community councils (Amendments 177, 20, 178, 179)
14. Grŵp 12: Cyfranogiad y cyhoedd (Gwelliannau 180, 181, 22, 182, 183, 184, 23, 24, 185, 25, 186, 26, 27, 28, 29, 187, 30, 188, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 201, 202, 203, 204, 205, 269, 206, 207, 208, 21) 14. Group 12: Public participation (Amendments 180, 181, 22, 182, 183, 184, 23, 24, 185, 25, 186, 26, 27, 28, 29, 187, 30, 188, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193, 194, 195, 196, 197, 198, 199, 200, 201, 202, 203, 204, 205, 269, 206, 207, 208, 21)
16. Grŵp 14: Cywiriadau drafftio (Gwelliannau 31, 85, 49, 53, 55, 91, 59, 60) 16. Group 14: Drafting corrections (Amendments 31, 85, 49, 53, 55, 91, 59, 60)
17. Grŵp 15: Cyfarfodydd, trafodion a mynediad at wybodaeth (Gwelliannau 270, 209, 271, 279, 280) 17. Group 15: Meetings, proceedings and access to information (Amendments 270, 209, 271, 279, 280)
15. Grŵp 13: Cydraddoldeb ac Amrywiaeth, rhannu swydd ac absenoldeb teuluol (Gwelliannau 268, 272, 274, 33, 34, 35, 36, 275, 276, 277, 37, 278, 273, 32) 15. Group 13: Equality and Diversity, job sharing and family absence (Amendments 268, 272, 274, 33, 34, 35, 36, 275, 276, 277, 37, 278, 273, 32)
18. Grŵp 16: Rheoli perfformiad prif weithredwyr (Gwelliannau 96, 210, 211, 212, 95) 18. Group 16: Performance management of Chief executives (Amendments 96, 210, 211, 212, 95)
19. Grŵp 17: Rheoliadau o dan y Ddeddf hon (Gwelliannau 38, 61, 62, 63, 244) 19. Group 17: Regulations under this Act (Amendments 38, 61, 62, 63, 244)
20. Grŵp 18: Cyd-bwyllgorau Corfforedig—amrywiol (Gwelliannau 101, 125, 126, 127, 128, 136, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143, 144) 20. Group 18: Corporate Joint Committees—miscellaneous (Amendments 101, 125, 126, 127, 128, 136, 139, 140, 141, 142, 143, 144)
21. Grŵp 19: Darpariaethau pellach am reoliadau cyd-bwyllgorau corfforedig (Gwelliannau 113, 284, 114, 285, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135, 137, 138) 21. Group 19: Further provisions about Corporate Joint Committees regulations (Amendments 113, 284, 114, 285, 115, 116, 117, 118, 119, 129, 130, 131, 132, 133, 134, 135, 137, 138)

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.

Cyfarfu'r pwyllgor drwy gynhadledd fideo.

Dechreuodd y cyfarfod am 10:00.

The committee met by video-conference.

The meeting began at 10:00. 

1. Cyflwyniadau, Ymddiheuriadau, Dirprwyon a Datgan Buddiannau
1. Introductions, Apologies, Substitutions and Declarations of Interest

May I welcome Members to this virtual meeting of the Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee? In accordance with Standing Order 34.19, I have determined that the public are excluded from the committee's meeting in order to protect public health. In accordance with Standing Order 34.21, notice of this decision was included in the agenda for this meeting, published on Tuesday of this week. This meeting is, however, being broadcast live on Senedd.tv, with all participants joining via video-conference. A Record of Proceedings will be published as usual. Aside from the procedural adaptation relating to conducting proceedings remotely, all other Standing Order requirements for committees remain in place. The meeting is bilingual, and simultaneous translation, from Welsh to English, is available. I would remind all participants that the microphones will be controlled centrally, so do not turn them on or off individually but wait for a prompt to unmute from the sound engineer each time you are called to speak.

So, item 1, then: introductions, apologies, substitutions and declarations of interest. We haven't received any apologies or substitutions. Are there any declarations of interest? No.

2. Bil Llywodraeth Leol ac Etholiadau (Cymru): Trafodion Cyfnod 2
2. Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill: Stage 2 Proceedings

Then we will move on to item 2, the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill, Stage 2 proceedings. I'm very pleased that we're joined today by Julie James MS, Minister for Housing and Local Government. Welcome, Minister. Would you like to introduce your officials? Well, actually, you haven't got any visibly with you, but I'm sure you've got some necessary help on hand, so we'll dispense with that.

The purpose of the meeting, then, is to undertake Stage 2 proceedings on the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill, and members of the committee should have before them the marshalled list of amendments and the groupings of the amendments for debate. The marshalled list of amendments is the list of all amendments tabled, marshalled into the order agreed by the committee at its meeting on 20 July. So, for this meeting, the order in which we will consider amendments is outlined on the agenda. You will see from the groupings list that amendments have been grouped to facilitate debate. The order in which amendments are called and moved for a decision is dictated by the marshalled list. I will advise Members when I call them whether they are being called to speak in the debate or to move their amendments for a decision. There will be one debate on each group of amendments. Members who wish to speak in a particular group should indicate this in the usual way. I will call the Minister to speak on each group. For the record, in accordance with the convention agreed by the Business Committee, as Chair, I will move amendments in the name of the Minister. For expediency, I will assume that the Minister wishes me to move all her amendments, and I will do so at the appropriate place in the marshalled list. Minister, if you do not want a particular amendment to be moved, please indicate this at the relevant point in proceedings.

In line with our usual practice, legal advisers to the committee and the Minister are not expected to provide advice on the record. If Members wish to seek legal advice during proceedings, please do so by sending a direct message to the legal adviser through Zoom. If necessary, I will call an adjournment, or the legal adviser will reply to you directly. As this is a virtual meeting, all votes will be undertaken through roll-call, as agreed by committee on 21 September. I will call each Member in alphabetical order and invite you to state whether you wish to vote in favour or against the amendment, or to abstain. I will state my own vote and declare the result.

3. Grŵp 1: Cymhwystra i bleidleisio mewn etholiadau Llywodraeth Leol (Gwelliannau 228, 157, 158, 229, 3, 4, 230, 159, 5, 6, 78, 226)
3. Group 1: Eligibility to vote in Local Government elections (Amendments 228, 157, 158, 229, 3, 4, 230, 159, 5, 6, 78, 226)

Group 1, then, relates to eligibility to vote in local government elections. The lead amendment in the group is amendment 228, in the name of Caroline Jones. I call on Caroline Jones to move amendment 228 and speak to this amendment and other amendments in this group. Caroline.

10:05

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 228 (Caroline Jones).

Amendment 228 (Caroline Jones) moved.

Diolch, Cadeirydd. I put forward the amendments in this group—in fact, all of my amendments—because I do not believe that we should be thinking about changing the electoral arrangements for local government before we have even tackled reform of local government. The systems of local government in this country are a mess. All the political parties accept this, and yet, despite years of plans and discussions, nothing has changed. Why have the promised reforms not been delivered? Why have manifesto pledges been broken? If one were cynical, one might jump to the conclusion that the vested interests of political parties are being put before the needs of the Welsh public. Party politics should have no role to play in waste collection, in public libraries, social services or the vast plethora of services provided by local government, services that have been cut to the bone or decimated by falling budgets.

The finances of local government would be in a much better situation if there wasn't so much waste and duplication. Wales, with its population of 3.1 million people, does not need 22 local authorities. We have a similar-sized population to the city of Birmingham, which is governed by a single city council. But, rather than tackle the issue head on, Welsh Government has opted to create various boards and bodies to aid collaboration, which is all well and good, but that just adds additional costs and complexity. And this is the issue a local government Bill should have been addressing, not how we elect local government. Until we address true reform in local government, I cannot support any changes to the electoral arrangements or franchise for local government.

And if we just consider the franchise for a moment, I have concerns about extending the franchise to 16-year-olds. We have a bizarre situation when the UK and Welsh Parliaments have been restricting 16-year-olds, preventing them from smoking, visiting a tanning salon or getting intimate body piercing, and yet we allow them to vote. So, the argument many politicians have put forward for lowering the voting age is that 16-year-olds can get married, have children, join the armed forces and so they should be able to vote. But what they fail to add is the need for parental consent, and yes, you can get married or enter into a civil partnership at 16, but you have to get permission from the parents. You can also join the army at 16, but, once again, you need permission from a parent or guardian. So, unless those advocating votes at 16 are also going to reduce the age of majority, I believe that the voting age should remain at 18. Regardless, I am of the firm opinion that franchise changes should occur only after we sort out the mess that is local government in Wales at present, and I hope that Members will agree with me and support my amendments. Diolch, Cadeirydd.

Diolch. Good morning, everyone. Briefly, I'll just comment on the other amendments and then move to our own. We'll abstain on Caroline Jones's amendments. Whilst they align with some of our own amendments, they don't in some other ways. So, we agree with the removal of the automatic right of all qualifying citizens to vote in local government elections and the removal of the ability for local authorities to change their voting system for local government elections, but we remain neutral on the issue of allowing 16 and 17-year-olds to vote in local government elections, hence our abstention.

We are seeking to support the Welsh Government amendments. There is one I seek clarity from the Minister on when she responds, and that's amendment 78, regarding the definition of 'secure accommodation'. Could she confirm whether this applies to young people who have custodial sentences or only those who are in secure accommodation not with a custodial sentence?

I'll move on to moving our own amendments, and I'll start with, obviously, amendments 157 and 158. These remove the current provision that extends the right to vote in local government elections to all foreign citizens regardless of citizenship. Most countries that allow non-citizens to vote have a minimum residency requirement. For example, to be eligible to vote in New Zealand, the person has to have lived continuously in the country for 12 months, whilst to vote in regional and municipal elections in Denmark, a person has to have had permanent residence in that country for three years before the date of the election. As such, we believe that voting rights should be attached to a person's period of residency. Our amendment 174, which follows later, will be dependent upon the outcome of this vote.

As I stated in the Stage 1 debate, currently Irish and Commonwealth citizens and relevant EU citizens can vote in local government and devolved elections, but this Bill would enable all foreign citizens legally resident in Wales to vote in local government elections. There's a long-standing reciprocal agreement between the UK and the Republic of Ireland as a consequence of the historical relationship between both countries, and the ability of Commonwealth citizens to vote in UK elections is a legacy of the Representation of the People Act 1918. However, we believe that this Bill as drafted in this context proposes a step too far. At least most of the few countries that allow foreign citizens to vote have a minimum residency requirement, but even that is missing here. As David Melding said when scrutinising similar provisions in the Senedd and Elections (Wales) Bill,

'their citizenship should determine where they principally vote, and if they make the choice not to pursue citizenship here, then it's their choice not to have political rights to the extent of voting in our elections'.

Amendment 159 I move. This introduces a specific duty on Welsh Ministers to introduce a national framework to promote awareness of the extension of the franchise to 16 and 17-year-olds, and to develop a national framework on promoting awareness and on political education. This amendment responds to the Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee's recommendation 2 in our Stage 1 report, which argued that the Bill should be amended to include specific provision to roll out an adequate level of education on politics and democracy in Wales across all schools. The Welsh Government recognised the intention behind the recommendation, but did not accept it. However, this amendment recognises the concerns of stakeholders such as the Electoral Reform Society Cymru, which argued that the current framework for political education in schools is not adequate to raise awareness amongst young people. They also stated that there is a democratic deficit across the whole of the Welsh population, but that teaching young people in Wales about Wales should be prioritised. Moreover, the Wales Electoral Co-ordination Board stated that consistency is of paramount importance when planning electoral events and suggested a national framework for public awareness would be preferable to 22 local authorities leading their own public awareness campaigns in slightly differing manners. The Association of Electoral Administrators agreed that any additional promotion activities should be properly resourced and follow a consistent approach. As we stated in our committee Stage 1 report, and as we recommended in our report on diversity in local government, we believe that the Bill should include provisions to roll out an adequate level of education on politics and democracy in Wales across all schools. I move accordingly.

10:10

Are there other Members who wish to speak? No, then I call on the Minister to speak.

Thank you, Chair. I very much welcome the opportunity to consider amendments to the Local Government and Elections (Wales) Bill today. This Bill is fundamental to providing local authorities with the powers and tools they have been asking for in order to deliver effective public services.

Sorry—my computer's just shut itself off. One second. There we go.

I'd like to place on record my thanks to all the members of this committee for their scrutiny of this Bill, and particularly to those Members who have tabled amendments to the Bill. May I also place on record my assurance to Members that we have considered very carefully each and every amendment tabled? 

Turning to the amendments in group 1, the Welsh Government believes that anyone contributing to the social or economic life of Wales should have the right to vote in local elections on issues that affect their daily lives. I do not support amendment 228. The Welsh Government has made it very clear over the last four years that we believe the franchise for devolved elections should include those aged 16 and 17 years and those legally resident in Wales. 

Last year, the Senedd voted by a two-thirds majority to extend the franchise for its elections, and I believe this should be replicated for local government elections. Two different franchises for devolved elections in Wales would be unfair to voters. I do not believe there is any reason why someone voting in a Senedd election should not vote in a local government election. Those who are affected by the decisions of local government should be able to elect their representatives. 

I also cannot support amendment 157 or amendment 158. The Welsh Government believes that anyone contributing to the social and economic life of Wales should have the right to vote in local elections on issues that affect their daily lives. We consulted in 2017 on whether or not the franchise should be extended to qualifying foreign citizens, and 73 per cent of those responding agreed that everyone living in Wales should be able to vote, irrespective of where they were born. Qualifying foreign citizens are now able to register to vote and are doing so, and will be eligible to vote in the 2021 Senedd elections. We do not believe there is any reasonable justification why someone voting in a Senedd election should not be able to vote in a local government election. 

I cannot support amendment 229. I do not support the removal of the provisions that are subject to the transitional provisions in section 3, and therefore I cannot support this amendment, which seeks to remove the section.

Amendments 3 and 4 are technical amendments to ensure the transitional provision in section 3 of the Bill only has effect for local government elections and referendums.

I do not support amendment 230. Supporting young people, particularly those in the most vulnerable situations, to understand their rights to vote and participate in democratic processes is essential if we are to engage the electorate in a meaningful and long-lasting way. While recent reforms to the electoral registration system have simplified the process for administrators, it is essential that new voters are supported to ensure they understand the registration processes properly and are able to engage with it actively.

I also cannot support amendment 159. I fully agree that providing support to young people in developing a good understanding of democratic processes is a vital part of extending the franchise for local government elections. However, the Welsh Government has been clear in its intentions that the curriculum for Wales will allow teachers to decide how to deliver education tailored to the specific needs of their pupils. One of the four purposes of the curriculum is to support learners to become ethical, informed citizens of Wales and the world. Good political education will be an essential part of the successful delivery of this core purpose. Access to good resources and support for teachers is critical, and we have been working with the Senedd Commission, the Electoral Commission and other key partners to develop resources to support the delivery of political education. We're also working with education consortia to develop professional learning to support teachers as they design and develop their curriculum around political education.

Amendment 5 is a consequential amendment that paves the way for the substantive amendment, amendment 6. Amendment 6 amends the definition of 'relevant young people' in section 4 to include an additional group of young persons. This extends a principal council's duty to promote awareness among and provide assistance to young people about registering as local government electors to care leavers who have reached the age of 14 and are under 18 who are not resident in the council's area and for whom the principal council has statutory responsibilities under section 109 of the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014.

Amendment 78 alters 7B of the Representation of the People Act 1983 to enable all young people from Wales in secure accommodation in the UK to register as local government electors using a declaration of local connection. All young people from Wales aged 16 and over who are placed in secure accommodation are already eligible to vote in devolved elections, and thus are entitled to register to vote. There are only 22 secure accommodation places available in Wales, all in south Wales. At any time, some secure accommodation placements for Wales are likely to be in England, including any from north Wales and any young women. Without the entitlement to register by using a declaration of local connection, young persons in secure accommodation would be deemed to be resident at the secure children's home where they are placed. If the home is in Wales, they would register in the locality of the secure children's home; if they are placed in England, there could be dispute about their entitlement to register in the home authority and, being under 18, they would not be eligible to vote in English local government elections. Enabling all young persons from Wales in secure accommodation to register using a declaration of local connection is an irrefutable statement that young persons in such accommodation are entitled to register to vote, and in the area they come from. And I urge the committee to support this amendment.

I also cannot support amendment 226. I reject the principle upon which this amendment is made, for the reasons I have already set out. It would fundamentally harm democracy in Wales to have two different franchises operating for devolved elections. I also believe that providing principal councils with the option of adopting the single transferrable vote as an electoral system is important to reflecting the individual circumstances of each authority.

So, in summary, Chair, I ask members of the committee to support amendments 3, 4, 5, 6 and 78 in my name, and to reject amendments 228, 229, 230, 157, 158, 159 and 226. Thank you.

10:20

Thank you. I call on Caroline Jones to reply to the debate.

I just stand by the speech that I've just made, Chair. Thank you very much.

Okay. Caroline, do you wish to proceed to a vote on amendment 228? Mark, you have your hand raised, sorry.

I don't know if we can take any further—. We can. Yes, okay, Mark. Go on. Minister. 

Obviously I said that we're minded to support this, but we needed one aspect clarified. So, I wonder if the Minister could confirm whether the definition of young people in secure accommodation would include those serving custodial sentences.

Yes. So, it's important to recognise, Mark, that all young people already have the right to vote. This amendment is about registering to vote using a declaration of local connection. It doesn't confer the right to vote; it allows them to register using a local connection. So, they already have the right to vote. And, yes, it applies to everyone. Apologies, Chair, I should have made that clear in my submission.

Okay, thank you, Minister. Thank you, Mark. Caroline Jones, then, do you wish to proceed to a vote on amendment 228?

Yes, okay. So, the question is that amendment 228 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we have an objection. So, I will therefore take a vote by roll call. So, the question, then, is that amendment 228 be agreed. Dawn Bowden, please state your vote.

Okay, and I vote against. So, in relation to amendment 228, there voted one in favour, four against and one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 228: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 228: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 157 (Mark Isherwood).

Amendment 157 (Mark Isherwood) moved.

The question is that amendment 157 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we have an objection, so I will therefore take a vote by roll call. Dawn Bowden, please state your vote. 

And I vote against. So, in relation to amendment 157, we have one in favour, four against and one abstention, so amendment 157 is not agreed.

Gwelliant 157: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 157: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 158 (Mark Isherwood).

Amendment 158 (Mark Isherwood) moved.

The question is that amendment 158 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We have an objection, so I will again take a vote by roll call. Dawn Bowden, please state your vote. 

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 158, we have one in favour, four against and one abstention, and that amendment is therefore not agreed.

10:25

Gwelliant 158: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 158: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 229 (Caroline Jones). 

Amendment 229 (Caroline Jones) moved.

Okay. The question is that amendment 229 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will therefore take a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, we have one in favour, four against, one abstention, and amendment 229 is not agreed.

Gwelliant 229: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 229: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 3 (Julie James).  

Amendment 3 (Julie James) moved.

I move amendment 3 in the name of the Minister. The question is that amendment 3 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We have an objection. So, we will take a vote by roll call. Dawn Bowden, please state your vote. 

And I vote for. Therefore, in relation to amendment 3, we have four in favour, one against, one abstention, and that amendment is therefore agreed.

Gwelliant 3: O blaid: 4, Yn erbyn: 1, Ymatal: 1

Derbyniwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 3: For: 4, Against: 1, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been agreed

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 4 (Julie James). 

Amendment 4 (Julie James) moved.

I move amendment 4 in the name of the Minister. The question is that amendment 4 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We have an objection. So, we will take a vote by roll call. Dawn Bowden, please state your vote. 

And I vote for. So, in relation to amendment 4, we have four in favour, one against, one abstention, and the amendment is therefore agreed. 

Gwelliant 4: O blaid: 4, Yn erbyn: 1, Ymatal: 1

Derbyniwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 4: For: 4, Against: 1, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been agreed

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 230 (Caroline Jones).  

Amendment 230 (Caroline Jones) moved.

If amendment 230 is agreed, amendments 159, 5 and 6 fall. The question is that amendment 230 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we will take a vote. Dawn Bowden. 

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 230, we have one in favour, four against, one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 230: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 230: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 159 (Mark Isherwood).

Amendment 159 (Mark Isherwood) moved.  

The question is that amendment 159 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we will take a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 159, we have one in favour, four against and one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 159: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 159: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 5 (Julie James)

Amendment 5 (Julie James) moved.

I move amendment 5 in the name of the Minister. The question is that amendment 5 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we have an objection. We will take a vote. Dawn Bowden. 

And I vote in favour. Therefore, in relation to amendment 5, we have five in favour, one against, and the amendment is therefore agreed.

10:30

Gwelliant 5: O blaid: 5, Yn erbyn: 1, Ymatal: 0

Derbyniwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 5: For: 5, Against: 1, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been agreed

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 6 (Julie James).

Amendment 6 (Julie James) moved.

I move amendment 6 in the name of the Minister. The question is that amendment 6 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we have an objection. We will take a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote in favour. Therefore, in relation to amendment 6, we have five in favour, one against, and the amendment is therefore agreed.

Gwelliant 6: O blaid: 5, Yn erbyn: 1, Ymatal: 0

Derbyniwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 6: For: 5, Against: 1, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been agreed

4. Grŵp 2: Systemau pleidleisio ar gyfer etholiadau Llywodraeth Leol (Gwelliannau 257, 160, 161, 258, 259, 162, 260, 163, 164, 165, 166, 7, 8, 167, 261, 231, 168, 262, 92, 93, 169, 170, 263, 222, 296, 223, 297, 156, 255)
4. Group 2: Voting system for Local Government elections (Amendments 257, 160, 161, 258, 259, 162, 260, 163, 164, 165, 166, 7, 8, 167, 261, 231, 168, 262, 92, 93, 169, 170, 263, 222, 296, 223, 297, 156, 255)

Group 2 relates to the voting system for local government elections. The lead amendment in the group is amendment 257 in the name of Delyth Jewell, and I call on Delyth Jewell to move amendment 257 and speak to this amendment and other amendments in this group. Delyth.

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 257 (Delyth Jewell).

Amendment 257 (Delyth Jewell) moved.

Diolch, Gadeirydd. We’ve tabled theses amendments to change the voting system in local government to a fair system. The arguments for doing this have been rehearsed before. First past the post has created many undemocratic outcomes. For an example, in Sketty in Swansea in 2012, the Liberal Democrats won all five seats despite gaining just 38 per cent of the vote. The Labour Party on 29.2 per cent and the Conservatives on 20 per cent all failed to gain a seat in that five-member ward, despite strong local support. Under the current system, those who finish third in terms of share of the vote can go on to win the most seats. The starkest example of this has been from 2008, where the Liberal Democrats came first in terms of seats for Cardiff, but third in terms of votes. This isn't a partisan point—all parties have benefited disproportionately from first past the post, and all have suffered from it. Multi-member wards make this even worse, and create something of a lottery. The question is whether we accept unfairness and a lottery, or make a positive change, so I will be putting these to a vote. Diolch, Gadeirydd.

Our amendments in this group seek to remedy the ability of local authorities to change their voting system from first past the post to singe transferable vote. This reflects evidence received by the Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee at Stage 1, where the majority of stakeholders did not support the provisions to enable principal councils to choose which voting system to use. I, therefore, call on committee members to be consistent to the views and concerns expressed at that stage. For example, the Welsh Local Government Association stated there's a need for a clear and consistent voting system across all local authorities to avoid complexity and risk of voter confusion, adding that the complexity of allowing principal councils to choose their own voting system could be quite horrendous, with the potential for chaos a real concern.

Similar concerns and opposition to the provision were expressed by all of the principal councils and representatives of town and community councils that responded to the committee's consultation. SOLACE, the society of local authority chief officers, acknowledged that there may be perceived benefits of allowing principal councils a choice, but suggested that the risk of complexity and confusion around having two voting systems

'could have the potential to disenfranchise voters with the worst-case scenario being an impact on turnout'.

The Electoral Commission, whist noting the electoral system to be used for local government elections is a matter for the Welsh Government and the Senedd to determine, concurred there are risks and challenges associated with the provision. This includes an increased risk of voter confusion and administrative challenges. The commission noted that it would be required to publish two sets of guidance—one on each voting system for electoral administrators, for political parties, candidates and agents—and run separate public awareness campaigns. The Electoral Commission also referred to the ethos of consistency in electoral planning that has developed in Wales over recent years, and said it would be disappointed if that co-ordinating activity was to be undermined by different systems operating in different counties. 

As I stated during the Stage 1 debate, 33 out of 35 respondents to the White Paper consultation disagreed with this and preferred to keep one voting system for the whole of Wales. Further, as our committee report states, the majority of the evidence received opposes the provisions that allow principal councils to choose their own voting systems. The regulatory impact assessment also notes that additional costs will be incurred should a principal council opt to change its voting system, but that these costs are currently unknown.

Amendment 169 seeks to ensure that Welsh Government fully involves stakeholders before making rules on the conduct of local elections in Wales. In its Stage 1 report, the Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee suggested that the Welsh Government engages with principal councils and communities before reforming electoral arrangements. But this amendment, our amendment, seeks to go further than the committee's suggestion by making it a requirement to actively involve principal and community councils, as well as local communities, to ensure that any changes to electoral arrangements are genuinely co-produced by the communities that they affect, rather than imposed upon them. As I also argued in the Stage 1 committee debate, it's therefore deeply concerning that the Minister rejected the committee recommendation that the Welsh Government undertakes an engagement programme with the Welsh Local Government Association, principal councils and communities across Wales around reforming voting arrangements for local government elections. Our amendment would also bring this Bill in line with the seven well-being goals and the five ways of working required of public bodies in order to meet their duties under the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015. I conclude.

10:35

Diolch, Gadeirydd. I share Delyth's belief that there shouldn't be two systems for electing councillors in Wales. I also believe that proportional representation should be the method used for electing our representatives. First past the post does not deliver democracy, and if we look at the constituency votes of the 2016 Senedd elections, Labour won 27 seats, yet just 15 per cent of Welsh people eligible to vote supported them, and that is hardly a mandate to govern. Proportional representation is fairer. However, I will be abstaining on Delyth's amendments because, as I stated earlier, this is putting the cart before the horse and we need to determine the future shape of local governance in Wales before we decide on how to elect its members. Diolch, Gadeirydd.

Diolch. Are there other Members who wish to speak? Huw Irranca-Davies.

Thank you, Chair. I just want to speak briefly in terms of Delyth's amendments, in terms of voting reform. I've long been a supporter of reform towards more proportionality both in Senedd elections and local authority elections. In fact, we discussed this extensively when we were taking evidence as well. But when the Minister appeared in front of us, it became quite clear that despite sympathy with these views and a willingness to take a step forward, there was no pressing demand out there from local authorities of any political persuasion to move ahead in this, and if there was, the measures within this Bill as currently proposed would enable that to be done on a local basis. It's far from perfect, I have to confess, and I can see, Chair, you're nodding as well because I'm suspecting where your sympathies may lie. But what we do have within the Bill as proposed is a significant step forward, because for the first time ever it is now countenanced that, subject to local determination, STV can actually be taken forward within a local authority. Now, as somebody who supports STV, that's something I welcome entirely, but I do think, further to this Bill, beyond this Bill, we'll probably have to do a lot more as electoral reformers to argue the case across the country and locally that there is a need for this to reflect greater diversity, greater representative diversity, in our local authorities, as well as at the Senedd eventually as well. But this is a step forward, so I'll be supporting the Government here, but I'll continue my passionate advocacy going forward, alongside others like Delyth—and I suspect others on this committee as well who are unable to speak on this particular amendment—to see electoral reform going forward. But I'm content with where the Government have got to on this because it allows that local determination. The opportunity to to introduce STV is here. It provides the challenges of having two local authorities having different systems running alongside, but I don't underestimate the intelligence of the electorate to make sense of that as well. So, I'll be supporting the Government. I have sympathy with Delyth's amendments here, but I just think this is a big step forward as it is.

10:40

Okay. Diolch, Huw. Does any other Member wish to speak on this? No. Okay. I call on the Minister to speak.

Thank you, Chair. The Welsh Government's policy as provided for in this Bill is to offer principal councils a choice between the two voting systems. Each council election is a separate event; voters will be focused on the election for their council, not on the council next door. I consider that introducing the local choice supports the principle of decisions being made at a more local level, and allows a council to reflect the different needs and demographics across parts of Wales. As such, I'm sorry that I cannot support any of the amendments tabled in this group from Delyth Jewell. Amendments 257 to 263 have the effect of mandating STV for all principal council elections, and remove the choice introduced by the provisions in the Bill.

I also can't support amendments 296, 297 and 255. These are consequential upon the amendments from Delyth Jewell, which I've already listed, and remove various other references to provision about the simple majority system, first past the post, across the Bill. Nor do I support any of the amendments in this group tabled by Mark Isherwood. Amendments 160 to 168 and amendment 170 remove the provisions that provide for the introduction of STV as one of two voting systems that would be available to principal councils. These amendments would keep the status quo—so the simple majority system, or first past the post—for all elections for principal councils, and no choice.

I cannot support amendments 222, 223 and 156. These are consequential upon the amendments from Mark Isherwood, which I've already listed, and remove various other references to provision about STV across the Bill. I ask Members to support amendments seven and eight, which are technical amendments to correct an incorrect cross-reference in Schedule 1. These amendments alter the English text only, as the Welsh version of the Bill is correct. I cannot support amendment 231. Section 13 of the Bill, which this amendment seeks to remove, inserts a new section, 36A, into the Representation of the People Act 1983, enabling the Welsh Minister to make rules in respect of the conduct of local elections in Wales.

And turning to my final amendments in this group, amendments 92 and 93, which also relate to section 13 of the Bill, as currently drafted, rules in respect of the conduct of elections may apply with or without modifications to the parliamentary election rules. These amendments expand this existing power to modify so as to enable the rules to amend, modify, repeal or revoke any enactment. Similar powers were provided to the Secretary of State when the supplementary vote system was introduced for PCC elections. As stated by the Law Commission, electoral law is complex, voluminous and fragmented with an enormous amount of primary and secondary legislation governing elections. Any new electoral legislation will have implications on a range of existing enactments. It is essential that any new electoral law is in agreement with all existing law and electoral practices, with these able to be modified where necessary, to ensure that legislation is fit for purpose.

I therefore consider it prudent to have a broad power, although I hasten to add that its application is strictly limited to modifications connected with, or as a consequence of, the conduct rules. In line with committee recommendations, these rules are subject to the affirmative Senedd procedure.

I also cannot support amendment 169. The Welsh Government believes that the Welsh Ministers should consult those they deem appropriate, and this would include those listed in this amendment, when developing the rules for local government elections in Wales. Our amendment 9 in the next group delivers this. The breadth of the power set out in amendment 9 will allow the Welsh Ministers to consult with the Electoral Commission, electoral administrators, returning officers, members of local authorities, and any group with an interest in the changes being made. In addition, amendment 9 is consistent with other consultation requirements in Part 1 of the Bill. If amendment 169 was adopted, it would question the scope of other consultation requirements. Diolch.

10:45

Diolch. I call on Delyth Jewell to reply to the debate. 

I thank Members for their contributions. I welcome what Huw Irranca-Davies was saying; I do appreciate that individual Members will be in different places, on individual journeys, with this. I do feel fervently that proportional representation is the direction in which we will eventually travel, if that's the right metaphor, and so I will be putting these to a vote to put that marker down that I look forward to a time when we have a more proportional voting system for everyone, and I'm sure that other Members will agree with that. And so diolch, Cadeirydd.

Okay, diolch. So, Delyth Jewell then has indicated that she wishes to proceed to a vote on amendment 257. If amendment 257 is agreed, amendment 160 falls. The question is that amendment 257 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, regarding amendment 257, there voted one in favour and four against and one abstention. Therefore, that amendment is not agreed. 

Gwelliant 257: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 257: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 160 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 160 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

The question is that amendment 160 be agreed, does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 160, there voted two in favour and four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 160: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 160: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 161 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 161 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

You do. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 161, there voted two in favour and four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 161: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 161: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 258 (Delyth Jewell).

Amendment 258 (Delyth Jewell) moved.

Yes. The question is that amendment 258 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to 258, there voted one in favour, four against, one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 258: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 258: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 259 (Delyth Jewell).

Amendment 259 (Delyth Jewell) moved.

Okay. The question is that amendment 259 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we'll move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. In relation to amendment 259, there voted one in favour, four against and one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 259: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 259: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

10:50

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 162 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 162 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

If amendment 162 is agreed, amendment 260 falls. The question is that amendment 162 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 162, there voted two in favour and four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 162: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 162: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 260 (Delyth Jewell).

Amendment 260 (Delyth Jewell) moved. 

Yes. The question is that amendment 260 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 260, there voted one in favour, four against, one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 260: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 260: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 163 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 163 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

The question is that amendment 163 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay, we'll move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 163, there voted two in favour, four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 163: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 163: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 164 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 164 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

The question is that amendment 164 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 164, there voted two in favour, four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 164: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 164: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 165 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 165 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

The question is that amendment 165 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 165, there voted two in favour, four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 165: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 165: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 166 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 166 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

If amendment 166 is agreed, amendments 7 and 8 fall. The question is that amendment 166 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. In relation to amendment 166, there voted two in favour, four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 166: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 166: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 7 (Julie James).

Amendment 7 (Julie James) moved.

I move amendment 7 in the name of the Minister. The question is that amendment 7 be agreed. Does any Member object? No Member has objected, therefore amendment 7 is agreed.

Derbyniwyd y gwelliant yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.34.

Amendment agreed in accordance with Standing Order 17.34.

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 8 (Julie James).

Amendment 8 (Julie James) moved.

I move amendment 8 in the name of the Minister. The question is that amendment 8 be agreed. Does any Member object?

Okay. No Member objects, therefore amendment 8 is agreed. 

Derbyniwyd y gwelliant yn unol â Rheol Sefydlog 17.34.

Amendment agreed in accordance with Standing Order 17.34.

10:55

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 167 (Mark Isherwood, gyda chefnogaeth Caroline Jones).

Amendment 167 (Mark Isherwood, supported by Caroline Jones) moved.

If amendment 167 is agreed, amendment 261 falls. The question is that amendment 167 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 167, there voted two in favour, four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 167: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 167: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 261 (Delyth Jewell).

Amendment 261 (Delyth Jewell) moved. 

The question is that amendment 261 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 261, there voted one in favour, four against and one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 261: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 261: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 231 (Caroline Jones).

Amendment 231 (Caroline Jones) moved.

If amendment 231 is agreed, amendments 168, 262, 92, 93, 9, 169, 10, 170 and 263 fall. The question is that amendment 231 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] I will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 231, there voted two in favour, four against, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 231: O blaid: 2, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 0

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 231: For: 2, Against: 4, Abstain: 0

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 168 (Mark Isherwood).

Amendment 168 (Mark Isherwood) moved.

If amendment 168 is agreed, amendment 262 falls. The question is that amendment 168 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 168, there voted one in favour, four against and one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 168: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 168: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 262 (Delyth Jewell).

Amendment 262 (Delyth Jewell) moved. 

The question is that amendment 262 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] We will move to a vote. Dawn Bowden.

And I vote against. Therefore, in relation to amendment 262, there voted one in favour, four against, with one abstention, and the amendment is therefore not agreed.

Gwelliant 262: O blaid: 1, Yn erbyn: 4, Ymatal: 1

Gwrthodwyd y gwelliant

Amendment 262: For: 1, Against: 4, Abstain: 1

Amendment has been rejected

Cynigiwyd gwelliant 92 (Julie James).

Amendment 92 (Julie James) moved.

I move amendment 92 in the name of the Minister. The question is that amendment 92 be agreed. Does any Member object? [Objection.] Okay. There is an objection, so we will take a vote. Dawn Bowden.