The provisions of the Billwill apply to England and Wales and the assembly was closely consulted in the drafting of the Bill and during its consideration in parliament.
'This should make it easier for local authorities to raise capital for important projects of benefit to the community.
'The assembly will consider a commencement order in November, which will introduce the provisions for Wales over which the assembly has discretion. There will then follow a process by which the assembly will be able to consider different items of subordinate legislation flowing from the Act over the next year.
'I very much welcome the introduction of this legislation. It will assist the assembly and local government to work together in the spirit of partnership.'
The Local Government Act 2003 contains many provisions which relate to local government finance and other matters. It covers, in particular, capital finance, financial administration, grants, revenue matters, business improvement districts, non-domestic rates, council tax, housing revenue, charging and trading and various miscellaneous matters including the 2004 elections and the repeal of the prohibition of promoting homosexuality.
The functions of the National Assembly
The Act gives the National Assembly powers in relation to:
Control of borrowing and credit
The use of capital receipts
Security for money borrowed
Issue of guidance on capital finance
Treatment of capital expenditure
Operation of local auth ority companies
Local authority accounting practice
Specification of minimum reserves
Determination of best value grants
Emergency financial assistance to fire authorities
Loans by Public Works Loan Commissioners
Payments to reduce local authority debts
Administration and finance of business improvement districts
Non-domestic rates, including relief to small businesses
Rating of meters
Local retention of non-domestic rates
Introduction of statutory revaluation cycle for council tax
Power to change number of valuation bands
Power to make fire authorities precepting authorities
Reform of housing revenue accounts
Charging for discretionary services
Regulation of trading powers
Matters relating to staff transfers
Changing the date of the 2004 local elections
Inspections of registered social landlords
Use of income from fixed penalties