Machinery of government changes: seventh report of session 2006-07, report, together with formal minutes, and oral evidence

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The Stationery Office, Jun 15, 2007 - Political Science - 36 pages
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Recent disputes over the creation of a new Ministry of Justice have demonstrated the need for a better way of making changes to the machinery of government. At present there is no mechanism to ensure that changes are fully considered before implementation and that the reasoning behind them stands up to scrutiny. The Ministers of the Crown Act 1975 ought to act as a Parliamentary check but at present it does not serve that function well as the Government has the power to decide whether Parliament gets a vote or even a debate. The Committee think that at the very least there ought to be timely debates because the need for Parliamentary assent would lead to greater scrutiny and therefore greater legitimacy. The Committee also note that the current machinery of government is fundamentally the result of the Haldane Report of 1918. It is time for a fresh look at the entire structure of government and a new Haldane inquiry.

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