Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee - Inquiries

Past Inquiries

The Government's Review of Consultation Principles

The House of Lords Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee has published its report on the Government’s review of Consultation Principles. It reasserts its concern that the Principles proposed by the Government may weaken the consultation process by reducing the opportunity for the public to respond to consultations.

The Committee stresses that the process of consultation is not an academic issue, but one which has a real impact on the quality of government policy-making and legislation. When the Government first published the Consultation Principles in July 2012, the Committee received over 70 representations from organisations concerned that they would not be able to produce well-argued, evidence–based responses if consultation periods were significantly reduced. In a report in January of this year, it urged the Government to review the Principles in the light of those representations.

The Committee says that the proposals resulting from the review “still suggest a Government inclined to prioritise their administrative convenience over the interests of potential respondents”. Its latest report sets out a number of continuing concerns.

The Report can be found at the following location:

17th Report - The Government's Review of Consultation Principles

Response by the Chemical Business Association to the Committee's Report (PDF PDF 117 KB)


The Government's new approach to consultation
Inquiry launched 31 October 2012
The Committee took evidence on the Government’s “new approach to consultation” announced in July 2012, which is intended to adopt a “more proportionate and targeted approach” to consultation. The Committee issued a call for evidence in preparation for taking oral evidence from the Government Minister responsible, Oliver Letwin MP on 11 December, the uncorrected transcript of which is below.

The Report and the Government's response can be found at the following locations:

The Committee received 550 submissions, including 477 emails from individuals who made submissions for the inquiry following an online campaign by the Institute of Employment Rights. The evidence and uncorrected oral transcript can be found in the following links:


Past Inquiries

Cumulative impact of statutory instruments on schools
Inquiry launched 16 December 2008

In the 2006-07 session DCSF made over 100 regulations that affected schools. Based on evidence from teachers, heads and governors the report recommends less legislation and proposes ways to manage it better.

The Management of Secondary Legislation
Inquiry launched 13 September 2005

The Management of Secondary Legislation report illustrates good and bad practice from Whitehall Departments in how regulations are explained, consulted on and costed. We followed this up two years later to see what progress Departments had made.

What happened next? A study of Post-Implementation Reviews of secondary legislation
Inquiry launched 24 June 2009

Government Departments should usually evaluate legislation within 3 to 5 years of it becoming law to see whether it is having the intended effect. This Inquiry found that only 46% had not done any sort of evaluation.