The content on this page relates to the work of the Committee until the Dissolution of Parliament on 12 April 2010.

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  • EU Select Committee from May 2010

EU Lisbon Treaty

Parliamentary control over Government decisions to opt-in

The former Chairman, Lord Grenfell, wrote to the Leader of the House, Baroness Ashton of Upholland, on 23 April 2008 to ask for a note on the Government's thinking on Parliamentary control of opt-in decisions. Baroness Ashton replied on 29 April. She gave evidence to the Select Committee on 13 May. Further correspondence led to agreement by the Home Secretary, the Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor, and the Attorney General of a statement by the Government which Baroness Ashton deposited in the Library of the House on the morning of 9 June. Later that day the House debated the Report Stage of the European Union (Amendment) Bill, and in particular an amendment tabled by Lord Goodlad, the Chairman of the Select Committee on the Constitution, which in a Report had recommended that decisions by the Government to opt in to legislation in the area of Freedom, Security and Justice should be subject to affirmative resolution. The Leader of the House relied on the Government Statement, and the amendment was defeated. See our report on Enhanced Scrutiny of EU Legislation with a United Kingdom opt-in (2nd Report, Session 2008-09, HL Paper 25).