Broads bill passes latest hurdle

A bill to improve the management and safety of the Broads was approved by a parliamentary commons committee yesterday with one amendment.The bill can now proceed to a third reading in the House of Commons before it moves to the Lords.

A bill to improve the management and safety of the Broads was approved by a parliamentary commons committee yesterday with one amendment.

The bill can now proceed to a third reading in the House of Commons before it moves to the Lords.

But with parliament breaking for its summer recess in a week, it will not come before the Commons until October at the earliest and may not reach the statute book until next year.

The bill will allow a new boat safety scheme to be enforced, which insists that motor cruisers have an MoT-style test.

A four-strong committee of MPs, none of whom were members for Norfolk, scrutinised the bill but did not make any of the changes requested by four objectors who had concerns, including the lack of representation for parish councils on the Broads Authority.

One clause was dropped - relating to the licensing of rescue boats, which government department Defra felt was unnecessary.

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Broads Authority chief executive John Packman said he had been confident that the bill would be approved, saying: “I thought the fact that we had reached agreement with the national and local boating boards was significant.”

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