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25 May 2010 : Column WS1

Written Statement

Tuesday 25 May 2010

Commissioner for Standards


The Chairman of Committees (Lord Brabazon of Tara): I have today tabled a Motion inviting the House to approve the appointment of Paul Kernaghan CBE QPM, former Chief Constable of Hampshire, as Commissioner for Standards for the House of Lords.

The Motion will be taken in the House on Wednesday 2 June.

The report of the Leader's Group on the Code of Conduct (the Eames Group) recommended the appointment of a Lords' Commissioner for Standards, and such an appointment is provided for in paragraph 16

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of the new Code of Conduct which was agreed by the House on 30 November and which came into effect at the beginning of the current Parliament on 18 May. The role of the Commissioner is to investigate alleged breaches of the code including the rules governing Members' financial support or the use of parliamentary facilities.

Recruitment to the Office of Lords' Commissioner proceeded by way of an open competition. A number of candidates were interviewed by a board, which included two external members and was chaired by Baroness Fritchie, a former Commissioner for Public Appointments. A smaller number were subsequently interviewed by a further board, comprising the Leaders of the three main parties or their representatives and the Convenor of the Cross-Bench Peers, chaired by the Lord Speaker. This board unanimously recommended the appointment of Mr Kernaghan. The appointment will be for an initial period of three years.

I have today placed a copy of Mr Kernaghan's CV in the Library.

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