Select Committee on Regulatory Reform Second Report

Appendix A

Letter from the Inquiry Manager of the Committee to the Department for Work and Pensions: Draft Legislative Reform (Health and Safety Executive) Order 2008: request for information

After review of the above draft Order which was laid before Parliament on 29 January 2008, the following questions arise. I should be grateful if you would provide your reply to these by 12 February.

Q 1  How are the three current HSC members not appointed after consultation with employers and employees chosen?

Q 2  The HSC is already a non-executive body. Please explain further why (other than merely because of its nine rather than 11 members) the current structure is considered not to provide adequate scope for non-executive management input.

Q 3  What are the estimated costs of the merger?

Q 4  What were the exact dates of the HSC consultation? Who were the consultees, and who responded?

Q 5  The ABI, the British Safety Industry Federation, the British Safety Council and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health are notable as not having responded to either consultation. Were any steps taken to try to elicit opinions from them?

Q 6  Were HSE employees, inspectors and officials consulted?

Q 7  Is there any intention to review and consult on the effectiveness of the proposals after an appropriate period of implementation?

Q 8  Paragraph 3.7 of the August 2007 consultation document states that "a few changes will be made to the functions and powers of the new Executive". Are those changes limited to the matters set out in paragraph 3.8 of that consultation document, together with the proposed new size and composition of the HSE Board? If not, what are the other proposed changes?

Q 9  Paragraph 11 of the explanatory document says that comments were invited from parliamentary counsel. What comments were received, if any?

Q 10  In order that the present proposal can be put in context, please explain why the Health and Safety at Work etc Act 1974 adopted a different model from that proposed by the Robens report.

6 February 2008

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