Post-legislative scrutiny

Front Cover
Stationery Office, Oct 25, 2006 - Law - 61 pages
Following on from a report by the House of Lords Select Committee on the Constitution (HCP 173-I, session 2003-04; ISBN 0104005416), published in October 2004, and a Law Commission consultation paper (Consultation Paper no. 178; ISBN 0117302635), published in January 2006, this report examines the options for ensuring effective post-legislative scrutiny of legislation. This refers to mechanisms which seek to review the effects of laws in operation in order to analyse how effectively the intended policy objectives have been met, to ensure better regulation and to identify good practice. The report notes that there is overwhelming support for the principle that there should be a more systematic approach to post-legislative scrutiny and that such scrutiny should be controlled by Parliament. It recommends the setting up of a new Parliamentary joint committee on post-legislative scrutiny, supported by the Scrutiny Unit, which could be involved in the pre-legislative as well as post-legislative stage; and the need for enhanced regulatory impact assessments (RIAs) to ensure the policy objectives of legislation are clearly stated. The report includes case studies of past legislation which have been included as potential candidates for post-legislative scrutiny to illustrate problems encountered, as well as examples of post-legislative scrutiny in Scotland, Switzerland and Canada.

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