THE COMMITTEE'S STANDING ORDER AND
MEMBERSHIP AND THE SCRUTINY RESERVE RESOLUTION
The European Scrutiny Committee is appointed under
Standing Order No.143, viz:
European Scrutiny Committee
143.(1) There shall be a select committee,
to be called the European Scrutiny Committee, to examine European
Union documents and
(a) to report its opinion on the legal and political
importance of each such document and, where it considers appropriate,
to report also on the reasons for its opinion and on any matters
of principle, policy or law which may be affected;
(b) to make recommendations for the further consideration
of any such document pursuant to Standing Order No. 119 (European
Standing Committees); and
(c) to consider any issue arising upon any such
document or group of documents, or related matters.
The expression 'European Union document' in this
Order and in Standing Orders No. 16 (Proceedings under an Act
or on European Union documents), No. 89 (Procedure in standing
committees) and No. 119 (European Standing Committees) means
(i) any proposal under the Community Treaties
for legislation by the Council or the Council acting jointly with
the European Parliament;
(ii) any document which is published for submission
to the European Council, the Council or the European Central Bank;
(iii) any proposal for a common strategy, a joint
action or a common position under Title V of the Treaty on European
Union which is prepared for submission to the Council or to the
(iv) any proposal for a common position, framework
decision, decision or a convention under Title VI of the Treaty
on European Union which is prepared for submission to the Council;
(v) any document (not falling within (ii), (iii)
or (iv) above) which is published by one Union institution for
or with a view to submission to another Union institution and
which does not relate exclusively to consideration of any proposal
(vi) any other document relating to European
Union matters deposited in the House by a Minister of the Crown.
(2) The committee shall consist of sixteen Members.
(3) The committee and any sub-committee appointed
by it shall have the assistance of the Counsel to the Speaker.
(4) The committee shall have power to appoint specialist
advisers either to supply information which is not readily available
or to elucidate matters of complexity within the committee's order
(5) The 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, and to report from
time to time.
(6) The quorum of the committee shall be five.
(7) The committee shall have power to appoint sub-committees
and to refer to such sub-committees any of the matters referred
to the committee.
(8) Every such 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, and
to report to the committee from time to time.
(9) The committee shall have power to report from
time to time the minutes of evidence taken before such sub-committees.
(10) The quorum of every such sub-committee shall
(11) The committee shall have power to seek from
any committee specified in paragraph (14) of this order its opinion
on any European Union document, and to require a reply to such
a request within such time as it may specify.
(12) The committees specified for the purposes of
this order are those appointed under Standing Order No. 152 (Select
committees related to government departments) including any sub-committees
of such Committees, the Select Committee on Public Administration,
the Committee of Public Accounts, and the Environmental Audit
(13) 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.
The present membership of the Committee is as follows:1
Colin Breed MP (Liberal Democrat, Cornwall South
Roger Casale MP (Labour, Wimbledon)
William Cash MP (Conservative, Stone)
Michael Connarty MP (Labour, Falkirk East)
Tony Cunningham MP (Labour, Workington)
Wayne David MP (Labour, Caerphilly)
Terry Davis MP (Labour, Birmingham Hodge Hill)
Jim Dobbin MP (Labour, Heywood and Middleton)
Mark Hendrick MP (Labour, Preston)
Jimmy Hood MP (Labour, Clydesdale)
Anne McIntosh MP (Conservative, Vale of York)
Jim Marshall MP (Labour, Leicester South)
Angus Robertson MP (SNP, Moray)2
Laurence Robertson MP (Conservative, Tewkesbury)
Anthony Steen MP (Conservative, Totnes)
Bill Tynan MP (Labour, Hamilton South)
On 18 July 2001, the Committee elected Mr Jimmy
Hood as its Chairman.
1 Appointed on 16
2 Appointed on 12
Resolution of the House of 17 November 19983
(1) No Minister of the Crown should give agreement
in the Council or in the European Council to any proposal for
European Community legislation or for a common strategy, joint
action or common position under Title V or a common position,
framework decision, decision or convention under Title VI of the
Treaty on European Union
(a) which is still subject to scrutiny (that
is, on which the European Scrutiny Committee has not completed
its scrutiny) or
(b) which is awaiting consideration by the House
(that is, which has been recommended by the European Scrutiny
Committee for consideration pursuant to Standing Order No. 119
(European Standing Committees) but in respect of which the House
has not come to a Resolution).
(2) In this Resolution, any reference to agreement
to a proposal includes
(a) agreement to a programme, plan or recommendation
for European Community legislation;
(b) political agreement;
(c) in the case of a proposal on which the Council
acts in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 251
of the Treaty of Rome (co-decision), agreement to a common position,
to an act in the form of a common position incorporating amendments
proposed by the European Parliament, and to a joint text; and
(d) in the case of a proposal on which the Council
acts in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 252
of the Treaty of Rome (co-operation), agreement to a common position.
(3) The Minister concerned may, however, give agreement
(a) to a proposal which is still subject to scrutiny
if he considers that it is confidential, routine or trivial or
is substantially the same as a proposal on which scrutiny has
(b) to a proposal which is awaiting consideration
by the House if the European Scrutiny Committee has indicated
that agreement need not be withheld pending consideration.
(4) The Minister concerned may also give agreement
to a proposal which is still subject to scrutiny or awaiting consideration
by the House if he decides that for special reasons agreement
should be given; but he should explain his reasons
(a) in every such case, to the European Scrutiny
Committee at the first opportunity after reaching his decision;
(b) in the case of a proposal awaiting consideration
by the House, to the House at the first opportunity after giving
(5) In relation to any proposal which requires adoption
by unanimity, abstention shall, for the purposes of paragraph
(4), be treated as giving agreement.
3Votes and Proceedings,
17 November 1998, p 1250.