Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments Thirty-Third Report


Memorandum by the Department of Health


(S.I. 1998/812, 1998/815, 1998/822, 1998/823, 1998/824, 1998/826, 1998/828, 1998/830 AND 1998/833)

1.  By a letter from its Clerk dated 29th April 1998 the Committee has requested the Department to submit a Memorandum on the following point —

    The Committee notes that each instrument comprises 4 pages and costs £1.10. Explain why the printer was not instructed to reduce the number of pages in each instrument to two in order to reduce the cost: compare, for example, S.I. 1998/818 which comprises two pages and costs 65p. The Department's attention is drawn to Statutory Instrument Practice, Circular No. 2(98) issued on 12 March 1998.
Length of Statutory Instruments

2.  The Department drafted and made some 52 Establishment and Dissolution Orders in the round of NHS trust mergers which took place on 1st April 1998. Effort was made to reduce the quantity of Orders: in several cases, dissolutions were combined and effected by the same Order, which greatly reduced costs and paper. The Department acknowledges that there is no reason why the Orders cited by the Committee should not have been 2 pages long, and undertakes to ensure in future that every effort is made to keep to a minimum the number of pages covered by an Order.

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