Standing Order No. 149
(1) There shall be a select committee, called the
Committee on Standards and Privileges
(a) to consider specific
matters relating to privileges referred to it by the House;
(b) to oversee the work of the Parliamentary Commissioner
for Standards; to examine the arrangements proposed by the Commissioner
for the compilation, maintenance and accessibility of the Register
of Members' Interests and any other registers of interest established
by the House; to review from time to time the form and content
of those registers; and to consider any specific complaints made
in relation to the registering or declaring of interests referred
to it by the Commissioner; and
(c) to consider any matter relating to the conduct
of Members, including specific complaints in relation to alleged
breaches in any code of conduct to which the House has agreed
and which have been drawn to the committee's attention by the
Commissioner; and to recommend any modifications to such code
of conduct as may from time to time appear to be necessary.
(2) The committee shall consist of eleven Members,
of whom five shall be a quorum.
(3) Unless the House otherwise orders, each Member
nominated to the committee shall continue to be a member of it
for the remainder of the Parliament.
(4) The committee shall have power to appoint sub-committees
consisting of no more than seven Members, of whom three shall
be a quorum, and to refer to such sub-committees any of the matters
referred to the committee; and shall appoint one such sub-committee
to receive reports from the Commissioner relating to investigations
into specific complaints.
(5) The committee and any sub-committee shall have
power to send for persons, papers and records, to sit notwithstanding
any adjournment of the House, to adjourn from place to place,
to report from time to time and to appoint specialist advisers
either to supply information which is not readily available or
to elucidate matters of complexity within the committee's order
(6) The committee shall have power to order the attendance
of any Member before the committee or any sub-committee and to
require that specific documents or records in the possession of
a Member relating to its inquiries, or to the inquiries of a sub-committee
or of the Commissioner, be laid before the committee or any sub-committee.
(7) The committee, or any sub-committee, shall have
power to refer to unreported evidence of former Committees of
Privileges or of former Select Committees on Members' Interests
and to any documents circulated to any such committee.
(8) The committee shall have power to refuse to allow
proceedings to which strangers are admitted to be broadcast.
(9) Mr Attorney General, the Lord Advocate, Mr Solicitor
General and Mr Solicitor General for Scotland, being Members of
the House, may attend the committee or any sub-committee, may
take part in deliberations, may receive committee or sub-committee
papers and may give such other assistance to the committee or
sub-committee as may be appropriate, but shall not vote or make
any motion or move any amendment or be counted in the quorum.
The membership of the Committee since its
nomination on 25 June 1997 has been as follows:
Mr Martin Bell (added 3 December 1997)
Mr Peter Bottomley
Mr Dale Campbell-Savours
Mr Quentin Davies (discharged 22 June 1998)
Mr Eric Forth (added 19 January 1999)
Mr Michael Foster (Hastings & Rye)
Sir Alastair Goodlad (added 22 June 1998 and discharged
19 January 1999)
Mr Charles Kennedy
Mr Tom Levitt
Mr Terry Lewis
Mr Robert Sheldon
Miss Ann Widdecombe (discharged 3 December 1997)
Mr Alan Williams (Swansea West)
Mr Robert Sheldon was elected Chairman on
1 July 1997.