PLC Paper No. LS 46
Paper for the House Committee Meeting
of the Provisional Legislative Council
on 14 November 1997
Legal Service Division Report on Subsidiary Legislation Gazetted on 7 and 10 November 1997
|Date of Tabling in Provisional LegCo|
| : ||12 November 1997
|Amendment to be made by|| :
||10 December 1997 (or 17 December 1997 if extended by resolution)|
Insurance Companies Ordinance (Cap. 41)
Insurance Companies (Authorization and Annual Fees) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 511)
This Amendment Regulation prescribes a separate class of authorization and annual fees payable to the Insurance Authority by captive insurers. Captive insurer, as defined in section 2(7) of the Insurance Companies Ordinance (Cap. 41), means a company which only carries on general business restricted to the insurance and reinsurance of risks within the same group of companies to which the captive insurer belongs. Captive insurers are a new class of insurers introduced by the Insurance Companies (Amendment) Ordinance 1997 (29 of 1997).
Members may refer to PLC Brief File Ref. : C2/2/33C(96) issued by the Financial Services Bureau in November 1997 for background information. According to the Brief, the fees aim at recovering the full cost of providing the services and the cost computation is stated in Annex B to the Brief. The proposed fees are lower than the fees for other authorized insurers ($227,300) as the regulatory requirements for captive insurers are more relaxed.
The Amendment Regulation will come into operation on 19 December 1997.
Road Traffic Ordinance (Cap. 374)
*Road Traffic (Public Service Vehicles) (Amendment) (No. 7) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 512)
This Amendment Regulation :
- increases the return toll payable by a taxi passenger using the Eastern Harbour Crossing (EHC) or the Western Harbour Crossing (WHC) from $10 to $15; and
- provides for the additional fare payable by a taxi passenger for every hiring involving the use of the Tai Lam Tunnel.
The first proposed increase is made in light of the increase in EHC tolls for private cars and taxis from $10 to $15 with effect from 1 January 1998 under the Eastern Harbour Crossing Ordinance (Amendment of Schedule) Notice 1997 (L.N. 531) (see below). Members may refer to PLC Brief File Ref. : TB CR 1/3/5591/71(97) Pt 3 issued by the Transport Bureau dated 4 November 1997 for background information, in particular the findings of surveys conducted and the five options considered by the Administration.
The proposed increase is recommended by the Transport Advisory Committee and will come into effect on 1 January 1998. The PLC Panel on Transport was briefed on 17 October 1997 when some members expressed grave concern about the traffic impact on the Cross Harbour Tunnel. The Administration however envisages that the cross-harbour traffic pattern will change after the opening of the new airport.
The second proposal relates to the use of Tai Lam Tunnel, a new tunnel extending under the Tai Lam Country Park from Ting Kau to Ho Pui scheduled to be open to traffic in mid-1998. It is proposed that the additional fare payable by taxi passengers is equivalent to the toll charge of $15. Consistent with the additional fare of other land tunnels, a passenger is not required to pay the return toll of the taxi. The proposal will take effect on a date to be appointed by the Secretary for Transport by notice in the Gazette.
Builders' Lifts and Tower Working Platforms (Safety) Ordinance (Cap. 470)
*Builders' Lifts and Tower Working Platforms (Safety) (Fees) (Amendment) Regulation 1997(L.N. 513)
This Amendment Regulation increases the fees payable on an application for registration and re-registration of an examiner or a contractor and for the approval of reports and certificates of test and examination issued by registered examiners.
Members may refer to Annexes B and C to the PLC Brief File Ref. : WB (W) 276/32/34 VI issued by the Works Bureau dated 5 November 1997 for cost computation and comparison of the existing and proposed fees respectively. According to the Brief, major building contractors and registered contractors were consulted and raised no objection. The fees were last revised in December 1996. The proposed increase is 7% based on the Government Consumption Expenditure Deflator and will come into effect on 20 December 1997.
Buildings Ordinance (Cap. 123)
Building (Administration) (Amendment) (No. 4) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 514)
Building (Demolition Works) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 515)
Building (Standards of Sanitary Fitments, Plumbing, Drainage Works and Latrines) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 516)
Building (Ventilating Systems) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 517)
All four Amendment Regulations are made as a result of the Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance 1996 (54 of 1996) ( "the Amendment Ordinance" ), which was enacted to ensure greater safety of building works and street works. Members may refer to PLC Brief File Ref. : PELB(L) 30/30/74(97)V issued by the Planning, Environment and Lands Bureau on 6 November 1997 for background information and highlights of major amendments proposed.
L.N. 514 mainly provides the administrative framework for implementing the supervision plan system pursuant to the Technical Memorandum for Supervision Plans issued under the Amendment Ordinance.
L.N. 515 specifies additional requirements for the carrying out of demolition works. According to the Brief, some of these requirements have been promulgated in a Practice Note for Authorized Persons and Registered Structural Engineers and have been followed by the building industry since July 1996.
The amendments made by L.N.s 516 and 517 are consequential upon the introduction of registered general building contractors and registered specialist contractors under the new registration system provided for by the Amendment Ordinance.
The amendments relating to the change of terms from " registered contractors " to " registered general building contractors" came into operation on 7 November 1997. This coincides with the commencement of the new registration system under the Amendment Ordinance (see L.N. 532 below). The remaining amendments will take effect on a day to be appointed by the Secretary for Planning, Environment and Lands by notice in the Gazette.
The Legal Service Division is still scrutinizing the Amendment Regulations and will inform members should there be any problem.
Television Ordinance (Cap. 52)
*Television (Royalty and Licence Fees) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 518)
This Amendment Regulation increases the annual licence fee for a commercial television broadcasting licence. The increase is to implement the second phase of the cost recovery programme which aims to achieve full cost recovery in 2001. The proposed fee represents 40% of the full cost per licence at 1997-98 prices. Details of the cost recovery programme are set out in the PLC Brief File Ref. : BCSB(CR) 9/19/6 (96) Pt. 2 issued by the Broadcasting, Culture and Sport Bureau in November 1997.
The fee was last revised in December 1996 and the present increase will come into operation on 1 January 1998.
Public Health (Animals and Birds) Ordinance (Cap. 139)
*Dairies (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 519)
*Public Health (Animals and Birds) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 523)
*Public Health (Animals and Birds) (Animal Traders) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 524)
*Public Health (Animals and Birds) (Exhibitions) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 525)
*Public Health (Animals) (Boarding Establishment) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 526)
*Public Health (Animals) (Riding Establishment) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 527)
Marine Fish Culture Ordinance (Cap. 353)
*Marine Fish Culture (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 520)
Plant (Importation and Pest Control) Ordinance (Cap. 207)
*Plant (Importation and Pest Control) (Fees) (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 521)
Pounds Ordinance (Cap. 168)
*Pounds Fees (Amendment) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 522)
Animals and Plants (Protection of Endangered Species) Ordinance (Cap. 187)
*Animals and Plants (Protection of Endangered Species) Ordinance (Amendment of Schedule 4) Order 1997 (L.N. 528)
All of the above 10 items of subsidiary legislation are made to revise the fees payable to the Director of Agriculture and Fisheries. Members may refer to PLC Brief File Ref. : ECON 1/2/1806/84, ECON 1/3231/69, ECON 6/2/1806/84, ECON 4/2/1806/84 and ECON 3/2/1/1806/84 issued by the Economic Services Bureau on 7 November 1997 for background information.
Set out below is a table summarizing the purpose of each subsidiary legislation.
|L.N. 519||increases the licence fee to maintain a dairy|
|L.N. 520||increases the fee payable for the grant or renewal of a marine fish culture licence|
|L.N. 521||increases the fees for the examination of plants and issue of a phytosanitary certificate, for visiting the applicants' premises to conduct such examination, for the maintenance of plants under quarantine and for the treatment of plants and soil|
|L.N. 522||increases the pound fees of stray animals on their release to their owners
|L.N. 523||increases the fees payable for use of an animal depot
|L.N. 524||increases the licence fee of an animal trader
|L.N. 525||increases the fees payable -|
- for a licence to hold a permanent exhibition; and
- for a permit to hold a temporary exhibition,of animals or birds to which the public are admitted on payment of a fee or other money consideration
|L.N. 526||increases the licence fee to keep a boarding establishment for animals
|L.N. 527||increases the licence fee to keep a riding establishment
|L.N. 528||increases the licence fees to import, export or possess any controlled medicines, endangered animals and plants|
Annex L to the Brief contains a comparison of the existing and proposed fees and Annex K the cost computation. L.N.s 519, 520, 524, 526 and 527 aims to achieve full cost at 1997-98 prices and the increase for the majority of these fees is 7% or less. The fees revised under L.N.s 521, 522 and 528 have been set at levels below their full costs and the Administration proposes to increase them at 7% based on the Government Consumption Expenditure Deflator. L.N.s 523 and 525 revise the fees by 9% to 15% to achieve cost recovery of 50% to 75%.
All fees were last revised in July 1996 except for the licence fee for marine fish culture (L.N. 520) which revision took place in October 1994. All proposed fee increases will take effect on 19 December 1997.
Import and Export Ordinance (Cap. 60)
Import and Export (General) Regulations (Amendment of Schedules) (No. 2) Order 1997 (L.N. 529)
This Order restricts the import and export of optical disc mastering and replication equipment except under and in accordance with an appropriate licence issued under section 3 of the Import and Export Ordinance (Cap. 60). The purpose is to empower the Customs and Excise Department to better monitor the flow of such equipment so as to prevent it from being used for copyright infringing activities.
Members may refer to PLC Brief issued by the Trade and Industry Bureau on 3 November 1997 for background information. The licences will be issued subject to conditions such as furnishing details of exporter, importer or forwarder, and seeking the prior approval of the Commissioner of Customs and Excise before any transfer or resale of the equipment. No fees are charged for the issue of import or export licence.
The Administration intends that the Order will come into operation in December 1997 on a day to be appointed by the Director-General of Trade by notice in the Gazette. It will not have retroactive effect on equipment imported into the HKSAR before commencement of the Order.
Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap. 53)
Antiquities and Monuments (Declaration of Historical Building) Notice 1997 (L.N. 530)
By this Notice, the building known as the Tang Chung Ling Ancestral Hall, at Lung Yeuk Tau, Fanling, New Territories is declared to be a historical building. Under the Antiquities and Monuments Ordinance (Cap. 53), the Secretary for Broadcasting, Culture and Sport may maintain, preserve or restore that building, and building works or demolition may not be carried out without a permit granted by the Secretary.
Eastern Harbour Crossing Ordinance (Cap. 215)
*Eastern Harbour Crossing Ordinance (Amendment of Schedule) Notice 1997 (L.N. 531)
By this Notice, the Eastern Harbour Crossing Road Tunnel tolls are varied pursuant to an arbitration award made in April 1997. The Administration has briefed the former LegCo Panel on Transport in a special meeting on 14 May 1997. A copy of the award (in Chinese only) is available in the Legal Service Division for Members' perusal.
Members may wish to note section 55(5) of the Eastern Harbour Crossing Ordinance (Cap. 215) provides that where in an award pursuant to submission to arbitration it is determined that the tolls should be varied, the tolls shall be varied in compliance with such award.
The proposed tolls will take effect on 1 January 1998. The existing tolls have been in place since enactment of the Ordinance in August 1986.
Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance 1996 (54 of 1996)
Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance 1996 (54 of 1996) (Commencement) (No. 3) Notice 1997 (L.N. 532)
This Notice appoints 7 November 1997 as the day on which certain provisions of the Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance 1996 (" the Amendment Ordinance" ) took effect. These provisions relate to (a) the registration, appointment and disciplinary matters of registered general building contractors, and (b) the power of the Building Authority to order works to cease if a building site becomes dangerous.
Other provisions in the Amendment Ordinance improving the registration of authorised persons and registered structural engineers came into effect on 3 January 1997. The section which provides for the issue of a technical memorandum to deal with the supervision and execution of building works and street works took effect on 29 August 1997. The corresponding Technical Memorandum For Supervision Plans was published on the same day and amended by the PLC on 28 September 1997.
Remaining provisions dealing with registered specialist contractors and supervision plans have yet to take effect.
Building (Administration) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 441 of 1997)
Building (Administration) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulation 1997 (L.N. 441 of 1997) (Commencement) Notice 1997 (L.N. 533)
This Notice appoints 7 November 1997 as the day on which section 2(a) and (c) of the Regulation (other than the substitution of registered specialist contractors) shall come into operation. The provision revises the fees for registration of general building contractors and for inspection and testing of drainage works done by them. Such revision is consequential upon the change of registration system for contractors effected by the Buildings (Amendment) Ordinance 1996 (54 of 1996) which also came into operation on the same day (see L.N. 532 above).
Electoral Affairs Commission Ordinance (129 of 1997)
Electoral Affairs Commission (Registration) (Electors for Functional Constituencies) (Voters for Subsectors)
(Members of Election Committee) (Legislative Council) Regulation (L.N. 534)
The objects of this Regulation are to provide the procedure for the preparation of -
- a functional constituencies provisional register and functional constituencies final register;
- a subsector provisional register and subsector final register; and
- the Election Committee final register.
Part III empowers the Electoral Officer (" the ERO ") to require information from a public authority or any person for the purpose of preparing a functional constituencies register or a subsector register.
Part IV sets out how electors for functional constituencies and voters for subsectors are to be registered by the notifications procedure.
Part V sets out the procedure for a person to apply for registration in a functional constituencies provisional register and a corporate elector or corporate voter to appoint an authorized representative.
Part VI provides that a person may object to the registration of another person as an elector, voter or an authorized representative. It also provides that a person may lodge a notice of claim in respect of the ERO ' s decision against such person.
Part VII specifies what is to be contained in the functional constituencies final register, subsector final register and Election Committee final register.
Part VIII sets out the offences and penalties under the Regulation.
The Regulation also amends certain provisions of the Electoral Affairs Commission (Registration of Electors) (Geographical Constituencies) (Legislative Council) Regulation (L.N. 499 of 1997).
Members may refer to PLC Brief File Ref. : REO 14/30/2 (CR) of November 1997 from Registration and Electoral Office for background information.
The Regulation will come into operation on 12 November 1997.
At the House Committee meeting on 7 November 1997, members agreed that a Subcommittee should be formed to study the Electoral Affairs Commission (Registration of Electors) (Geographical Constituencies) (Legislative Council) Regulation (L.N. 499 of 1997) and this Regulation. The next meeting of the Subcommittee will be held on 13 November 1997.
The Legal Service Division is still scrutinizing the legal and drafting aspects of the Regulation.
Wong Sze-man, Bernice (L.N.s 511 - 533)
Lam Ping-man, Stephen (L.N. 534)
Assistant Legal Advisers
Provisional Legislative Council Secretariat
12 November 1997