Scrutiny Reform follow-up and Legacy Report - European Scrutiny Contents

7  Stakeholder survey

63. In the final stages of the Parliament we conducted a survey of our stakeholders. The pace and scale of our work (scrutinising over 1,000 documents a year) means that we only rarely conduct full-scale inquiries into particular measures, but we nonetheless welcome submissions and regularly refer to them in our Reports. A particular example in the 2014-15 Session was our work on the Ports Regulation,41F[42] which included liaison with both the UK Major Ports Group and the trade union Unite.

64. Twenty-five organisations responded to the survey, including several umbrella groups representing a number of their members. The results revealed a considerable degree of interest in the scrutiny process and we received some positive feedback about the work we had done.

65. We posed the question "If you have submitted comments, what response did you receive, and were you content with the outcome?" The majority painted a positive picture:

·  "A supportive and informed response";

·  "The comments were listened to and we were content with the outcome";

·  "staff are always very helpful";

·  "The Committee response was detailed … The Committee's engagement with Government Ministers was extremely helpful";

·  "Helpful response, good understanding of the issues. Our concerns were raised effectively with the Minister";

·  "The Committee … used the information we provided to hold the Government to account very effectively"; and

·  "We, and related professions, were called to give evidence to the Committee. We were very satisfied with the outcome."

66. Others were not wholly positive:

·  "confirmation of receipt";

·  "No response that I can recall";

·  "We were … satisfied that the Committee sought assurances on the areas of concern from the Minister responsible before allowing the dossier to proceed. However it was not clear what level of assurance the Committee was seeking … the decision to give the dossier a green light would appear to be entirely subjective".

67. Our Scrutiny Reform Report concluded that we would in future consider in more detail the "impacts" of EU legislation. Stakeholder engagement is clearly an important part of that process. We have some excellent examples over this Parliament of effective liaison with outside bodies, but there is always more that could be done to raise the profile of the Committee, particularly using our website and social media, and we look to our successor Committee in the new Parliament to take that forward. We recommend that our successor Committee repeat this survey exercise at regular intervals in the new Parliament to get feedback on the scrutiny system.

42   See the Committee's Fourteenth Report of Session 2014-15, HC 219-xiii Back

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Prepared 25 March 2015