Select Committee on Public Administration Third Report


PROCEEDINGS OF THE COMMITTEE

RELATING TO THE REPORT

Thursday 13th December 2001

Members present:

Tony Wright, in the Chair


Mr Kevin BrennanMr John Lyons
Annette BrookeMr Gordon Prentice
Mr David HeyesMr Brian White
Mr Ian Liddell-Grainger



  Draft Report [Special Advisers: Boon or Bane: The Government Response to the Committee's Fourth Report of Sessions 2000-01], proposed by the Chairman, brought up and read.

  Ordered, That the draft Report be read a second time, paragraph by paragraph.

  Paragraphs 1 to 7 read and agreed to.

  Paragraph 8 read, as follows:

    "We regret that the Government has not accepted the Committee's recommendation of a cap on the amount of money that can be voted by Parliament for special advisers. We hope that the Government will at least now move swiftly to cap the overall numbers of special advisers as part of its forthcoming Civil Service Act. This would provide an opportunity to correct some of the inaccurate perceptions of special advisers which have led to what we called "misdirected attacks". The principal safeguard against such attacks on special advisers is greater transparency in appointment and greater clarity in operation, along with more effective mechanisms to deal with particular cases of difficulty."

  Amendment proposed, in line 2, to leave out from the word "We" to the word "attacks."—(Mr Brian White.)

  Question put, That the Amendment be made.

  The Committee divided.
Ayes, 1Noes, 3
Mr Brian WhiteMr David Heyes
Mr Ian Liddell-Grainger
Mr John Lyons

  Paragraph agreed to.

  Paragraphs 9 to 15 agreed to.

  Resolved, That the Report, as amended, be the Third Report of the Committee to the House.—(The Chairman.)

  Ordered, That the Chairman do make the Report to the House.

  Ordered, That the "Government Response to the Committee's Fourth Report of Session 2000-01" be appended to the report.—(The Chairman.)

  Ordered, That the provisions of Standing Order No. 134 (Select committees (reports)) be applied to the Report.

[Adjourned till Thursday 10th January at Ten o'clock.


 
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Prepared 18 December 2001