OTHER

House of Commons Commission decisions – 27 April 2020

29 April 2020

Present:

  • The Speaker, in the Chair
  • Jacob Rees-Mogg
  • Valerie Vaz
  • Sir Charles Walker
  • Dame Rosie Winterton
  • Pete Wishart
  • Dr John Benger (Clerk of the House)
  • Ian Ailles (Director General)
  • Jane McCall (External member)
  • Dr Rima Makarem (External member)

 

1.   Covid-19 updates

The Commission noted verbal updates from the Clerk of the House on virtual Parliament implementation, and from the Director General on House Service operations.

2.   Implementation of Dame Laura Cox’s 3rd recommendation

The Commission agreed the implementation plan for its preferred option on the determination of complaints against Members without MP involvement, which will see the establishment of an independent expert panel to replace the Committee on Standards in considering ICGS cases.

In particular, it agreed the following aspects of the implementation plan:

  • The House would be asked to consider whether or not there should be a time-limited debate led by a member of the House of Commons Commission in the very rare circumstances where it is asked to implement a sanction of suspension or expulsion of a Member following a panel determination;
  • The independent expert panel would not include a former Member;
  • The Independent Expert Panel would adopt the Committee on Standards appeals framework;
  • The recruitment process would select a Chair for the panel;
  • The Independent Expert Panel would use the confidentiality processes established by the Committee on Standards; and
  • The Commons Executive Board, in conjunction with the Commission, would finalise the person specification and conduct the recruitment process. 

The consultation paper can be found here. A high-level summary of the consultation responses can be found here (PDF PDF 114 KB). The Commission has published an explanatory paper ahead of the debate, which is available here (PDF PDF 108 KB).

3.   Any other business

None.

4.   Date of next meeting

The next meeting of the Commission/MEC will take place on Monday 11 May at 10.00 am in Speaker’s Study and via Skype or Microsoft Teams.

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