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Pre-legislative scrutiny under the 2015 and 2017 Conservative Governments

Published Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Pre-legislative scrutiny of draft bills or clauses in the 2015 Parliament.

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This Briefing Paper provides a brief summary of the background to the development of pre-legislative scrutiny and an overview of the surrounding parliamentary procedure in Section 1.

Section 2 looks at draft bills announced or published in the 2015 and 2017 Parliaments and their subsequent scrutiny. Also included are draft bills announced in the 2014-15 session subject to pre-legislative scrutiny in the subsequent 2015 Parliament.

2015 Parliament

Seven proposals for draft legislation were announced during the 2015 Parliament; four draft bills and a set of draft clauses were published. All published draft legislation was scrutinised by the relevant select committee and one (the Investigatory Powers Bill) by three committees. Four received government responses and two of the draft bills were subsequently introduced in the House of Commons.

Current 2017 Parliament

Three draft bills were announced in the Queens Speech on 21 June 2017 and a draft clause was announced and published in September 2017.

Statistics on draft bills

Table 1 in the Appendix notes the number of bills published in each session since 1997-98 and Tables 2 and 3 detail all draft bills announced or published and their subsequent progress in the 2017 and the 2017 Parliaments to date.

Draft legislation 1997 - 2015

The Commons Library briefing on Pre-legislative scrutiny looks at the background to the development of pre-legislative scrutiny under the 1997-2010 Labour Governments. It also reviews the procedures followed in allocating draft bills to committees and by the committees in examining draft bills. It provides summary details of the draft bills published between 1997 and 2010 and their subsequent progress. It also reviews some of the analysis of pre-legislative scrutiny that has taken place.

The briefing on Pre-legislative scrutiny under the Coalition Government: 2010-2015 starts from the formation of the Coalition Government in May 2010 and reviews both the commitments it gave on pre-legislative scrutiny and the draft bills it published.

Links to draft bills before Parliament and associated documents are available on the Parliament website.

Commons Briefing papers CBP-7757

Authors: Richard Kelly; Sarah Priddy

Topic: Legislative process

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