Investigatory Powers Bill — Clause 194 — An Investigatory Powers Commission — 6 Jun 2016 at 20:01
The majority of MPs voted against creating a new public body called the Investigatory Powers Commission to oversee the use of investigatory powers.
The intent was the commission would be headed by the Investigatory Powers Commissioner and the other judicial commissioners and their staff would be part of the body.
MPs were considering the Investigatory Powers Bill.
The amendment rejected in this vote was:
- Amendment 465, page 149, line 7, at end insert—
- ‘( ) There shall be a body corporate known as the Investigatory Powers Commission.
- ( ) The Investigatory Powers Commission shall have such powers and duties as shall be specified in this Act.
If it had not been rejected the clause would have added the above subclause to clause 194 of the Bill which was titled: Investigatory Powers Commissioner and other Judicial Commissioners
An explanatory statement accompanying a series of related amendments stated:
- The purpose of these amendments is to replace the proposal to create an Investigatory Powers Commissioner with provisions to create a new Investigatory Powers Commission. They would provide that no appointment can be made except pursuant to a recommendation by the independent bodies in England and Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland tasked with making judicial appointments in those jurisdictions.
Speaking during the debate Joanna Cherry MP (Edinburgh South West, Scottish National Party) stated
- Our amendments seek to say that in addition to the investigatory powers and judicial commissioners there should be a separate body, known as the investigatory powers commission. It is not just some little notion of mine or of the SNP; it is what was recommended by the Royal United Services Institute’s independent surveillance review, the Joint Committee on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill, and by David Anderson QC’s investigatory powers review. David Anderson said that there should be a new independent surveillance and intelligence commission. It is a matter not only of what it is called; it is matter of what it actually does.
Robert Buckland MP (South Swindon, Conservative) stated during the debate:
- I am still not persuaded that the creation of an independent non-departmental public body—namely the investigatory powers commission—would add anything to the thrust of reforms that we are already undertaking, other than cost to the taxpayer. I therefore do not think that creating a new statutory body will add anything to the public interest, which is what we are trying to serve.
The report of the Joint Committee on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill stated in paragraph 570:
- Clause 167(6) of the draft Bill provides that the “Investigatory Powers Commissioner and the other Judicial Commissioners are to be known, collectively, as the Judicial Commissioners.” The Interception of Communications Commissioner’s Office (IOCCO) raised concerns with us that this approach failed to acknowledge “the reality” that the Judicial Commissioners themselves would “only be performing a very narrow part of the oversight—the prior authorisation of some of the more intrusive investigatory powers. The bulk of the oversight will actually be carried out by inspectors and staff within the Commission.” To ensure “effective” oversight the IOCCO said the inspectors need a “clear legal mandate to require information from public authorities, to launch and undertake audits, inspections, inquiries, investigations and react in real time when non-compliance or contraventions of the legislation are discovered during an inspection.
In a debate about three months prior to this vote Home Secretary Theresa May MP (Maidenhead, Conservative) stated:
- Although one person will oversee the Investigatory Powers Commission as the Investigatory Powers Commissioner, they will have under them a number of judicial commissioners who will have extensive experience and will undertake certain tasks—first, on the new process of the double-lock authorisation for warrantry that we are introducing. They will also undertake the inspection and review of the operation of the agencies in the same way that the three commissioners have done so far. Far from reducing oversight, this Bill will enhance the oversight that is available.
-  Parliament's webpage on the Investigatory Powers Bill
-  Clause 194 of the Investigatory Powers Bill as at the time of the vote
-  Page of amendment papers including amendment 465, and the related explanatory statement accompanying amendment 469
-  Joanna Cherry MP (Edinburgh South West, Scottish National Party), House of Commons, 6 June 2016
-  Robert Buckland MP (South Swindon, Conservative), House of Commons, 6 June 2016
-  Report of Joint Committee on the Draft Investigatory Powers Bill, Report of Session 2015-16 - 11 February 2016 (HL Paper 93, HC 651)
-  Theresa May MP (Maidenhead, Conservative), House of Commons, 6 June 2016
Votes by party, red entries are votes against the majority for that party.
What is Tell? '+1 tell' means that in addition one member of that party was a teller for that division lobby.
What are Boths? An MP can vote both aye and no in the same division. The boths page explains this.
What is Turnout? This is measured against the total membership of the party at the time of the vote.
|Party||Majority (No)||Minority (Aye)||Both||Turnout|
|Con||272 (+2 tell)||0||0||83.0%|
|SNP||0||49 (+2 tell)||0||94.4%|