Constitutional Affairs Committee

About the Committee

The Committee was first established in January 2003 to examine the work of the Lord Chancellor's Department and associated public bodies. Following constitutional changes announced on 12 June 2003, the Department for Constitutional Affairs (DCA) succeeded the Lord Chancellor's Department and the Committee was renamed to reflect the change.

The current Committee was nominated on 13 July 2005. At its first meeting, Rt Hon Alan Beith MP was elected Chairman.

The Committee has 11 members. At least 3 of whom (refered to as a quorum) must be present for any formal proceedings to take place. The members are appointed by the House of Commons and unless discharged remain on the Committee until the next dissolution of Parliament.

Committee powers

The Committee is appointed by the House of Commons to examine the expenditure, administration and policy of the Department for Constitutional Affairs (DCA) and its associated public bodies. Standing Order 152 of the Standing Orders of the House of Commons (the rules which govern the proceedings of the House) sets out its powers.

Committee remit

The Committee's remit covers all the policy areas and organisations for which the DCA is responsible.