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Understanding devolution in Wales
Understanding devolution in Wales

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5.2 LCOs

With secondary law-making powers, AMs could propose ‘legislative competence orders’ (LCOs) in 20 defined areas of policy and it would then be up to the Houses of Parliament to pass them.

  • Areas of policy:
  • agriculture, fisheries, forestry and rural development
  • ancient monuments and historic buildings
  • culture
  • economic development
  • education and training
  • environment
  • fire and rescue services and promotion of fire safety
  • food
  • health and health services
  • highways and transport
  • housing
  • local government
  • National Assembly for Wales
  • public administration
  • social welfare
  • sport and recreation
  • tourism
  • town and country planning
  • water and flood defence
  • Welsh language

Any areas not listed were considered non-devolved and would be matters on which the UK Parliament would legislate.

This system was not effective as it relied on time being made available at Westminster. In the first two years of operation, only four LCOs passed. Proposals which were politically difficult were delayed or abandoned for example, an attempt by the Assembly to prohibit the ‘right to buy’ council houses.