Legislating without effect

Lord Norton

After Parliament has passed a Bill, it receives Royal Assent and becomes an Act of Parliament.  Provisions of an Act take effect upon Royal Assent unless provided otherwise.  In practice, it is common to provide otherwise, with ministers being empowered by order to make commencement orders, stipulating the date on which the provisions, or particular…

The cost of the House

Lord Norton

Each year, a question is usually tabled to find out the annual total costs, and the cost per member, of the House of Commons, the House of Lords and the European Parliament.  At the end of last month, the Commercial Secretary to the Treasury gave the costs as follows: HOUSE OF COMMONS Annual cost: £392m…

The death of JFK

Baroness Deech

The personal, not the political.  The stream of newspaper supplements, plays, documentaries, is upsetting me even more than it did at the time.  Like everyone else, I remember the moment well.  I was at a party at Oxford, which broke up as the news came through.  A fellow student invited me back to his room…

Privy Council poppycock

Baroness Deech

The Royal Charter on Press Regulation has been signed off by the Queen on the advice of the Privy Council. Members of the public probably think that when the Queen in Privy Council is considering a new Charter, she sits with the wisest men and women of the realm, deliberating, drafting, listening to the pros…

Transparency of Lobbying Bill

Lord Hodgson

The Transparency of Lobbying Bill has given rise to concerns in the charity sector as to the impact this may have on their ability to influence policy development particularly in the run up to future General Elections. At its heart this issue is about where policy work crosses over into campaigning. The charity sector enjoys…

Women in Democracy

Baroness Valentine

15-21 November is Parliament Week- an annual event that raises awareness about Parliament and democratic life in the UK. This year, the theme is ’Women in Democracy’, and I am pleased to support it. My first job was at Barings bank in the 1980s and I was one of the first female executives to work there. At the time,…