Committees of the Scottish Parliament

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Private Bill Committees are set up to deal with the legislation required for major public sector infrastructure projects - such as the underground extensions to the National Gallery of Scotland in 2003.

The Scottish Parliament has a number of committees, with small numbers of Members appointed to deal with particular topics or issues.

Much of the work of the Scottish Parliament is done in committee. The role of committees is stronger in the Scottish Parliament than in other parliamentary systems, partly as a means of strengthening the role of backbenchers in their scrutiny of the Government[1] and partly to compensate for the fact that the parliament is unicameral (there is no revising chamber).

The principal role of committees in the Scottish Parliament is to conduct inquiries, scrutinise legislation and hold the government to account.[2] Committee meetings take place in the Parliament's committee rooms all day Tuesday and Wednesday morning when Parliament is sitting. Committees can also meet at other locations throughout Scotland.[3]

Membership of the committees reflects the balance of parties across Parliament.[2] There are different types of committee, with their functions set out in different ways.

The membership of the committees in August 2011 is shown below. All committees also have substitute members (not shown).

Mandatory Committees[edit]

Mandatory Committees are committees which are set down under the Scottish Parliament's standing orders, which govern their remits and proceedings. The current Mandatory Committees of the Scottish Parliament are:[2]

Delegated Powers and Law Reform Committee[edit]

Name Party
John Scott (Convener) Scottish Conservative Party
Stuart McMillan (Deputy Convener) Scottish National Party
David Torrance Scottish National Party
Monica Lennon Scottish Labour Party
Rachael Hamilton Scottish Conservative Party

Equal Opportunities[edit]

Name Party
Christina McKelvie (Convener) Scottish National Party
Alex Cole-Hamilton (Deputy Convener) Scottish Liberal Democrats
Annie Wells Scottish Conservative Party
David Torrance Scottish National Party
Jeremy Balfour Scottish Conservative Party
Mary Fee Scottish Labour Party
Willie Coffey Scottish National Party

European and External Relations[edit]

Name Party
Joan McAlpine (Convener) Scottish National Party
Lewis Macdonald (Deputy Convener) Scottish Labour Party
Emma Harper Scottish National Party
Jackson Carlaw Scottish Conservative Party
Rachael Hamilton Scottish Conservative Party
Richard Lochhead Scottish National Party
Ross Greer Scottish Green Party
Stuart McMillan Scottish National Party
Tavish Scott Scottish Liberal Party

Finance[edit]

Name Party
Bruce Crawford (Convener) Scottish National Party
Alex Johnstone (Deputy Convener) Scottish Conservative Party
Adam Tomkins Scottish Conservative Party
Ash Denham Scottish National Party
Ivan McKee Scottish National Party
James Kelly Scottish Labour Party
Maree Todd Scottish National Party
Murdo Fraser Scottish Conservative Party
Neil Bibby Scottish Labour Party
Patrick Harvie Scottish Green Party
Willie Coffey Scottish National Party

Public Audit[edit]

The remit of the committee, as published by the Parliament, is to consider and report on:

  1. any accounts laid before the Parliament
  2. any report laid before or made to the Parliament by the Auditor General for Scotland
  3. any other document laid before the Parliament concerning financial control, accounting and auditing in relation to public expenditure
Name Party
Jenny Marra (Convener) Scottish Labour Party
Alison Harris (Deputy Convener) Scottish Conservative Party
Alex Neil Scottish National Party
Colin Beattie Scottish National Party
Gail Ross Scottish National Party
Liam Kerr Scottish Conservative Party
Monica Lennon Scottish Labour Party

Public Petitions[edit]

The remit of the Committee is to decide what action should be taken on admissible public petitions. The Committee is also responsible for deciding, in cases of dispute, whether a public petition is admissible.

On 16 June 2009 the Committee reported on its 'Inquiry into the public petitions process'[4] issued to reflect 10 years of operation, which included an evaluation of the pioneering e-Petitioner online petitioning system.

Name Party
Johann Lamont (Convener) Scottish Labour Party
Angus MacDonald (Deputy Convener) Scottish National Party
Brian Whittle Scottish Conservative Party
Maurice Corry Scottish Conservative Party
Rona Mackay Scottish National Party

Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments[edit]

Name Party
Clare Adamson (Convener) Scottish National Party
Patrick Harvie (Deputy Convener) Scottish Green Party
Alexander Stewart Scottish Conservative Party
Clare Haughey Scottish National Party
Daniel Johnson Scottish Labour Party
John Scott Scottish Conservative Party
Tom Arthur Scottish National Party

Subject Committees[edit]

Subject Committees are established at the beginning of each parliamentary session, and again the balance of members on each committee reflects the balance of parties across Parliament. Typically each committee corresponds with one (or more) of the departments (or ministries) of the Scottish Government. The current Subject Committees are:[2]

Economy, Jobs and Fair Work[edit]

Name Party
Gordon Lindhurst (Convener) Scottish Conservative Party
John Mason (Deputy Convener) Scottish National Party
Andy Wightman Scottish Green Party
Ash Denham Scottish National Party
Dean Lockhart Scottish Conservative Party
Gil Paterson Scottish National Party
Gillian Martin Scottish National Party
Gordon MacDonald Scottish National Party
Jackie Baillie Scottish Labour Party
Liam Kerr Scottish Conservative Party
Richard Leonard Scottish Labour Party

Education and Skills[edit]

Name Party
James Dornan (Convener) Scottish National Party
Johann Lamont (Deputy Convener) Scottish Labour Party
Colin Beattie Scottish National Party
Daniel Johnson Scottish Labour Party
Fulton MacGregor Scottish National Party
Gillian Martin Scottish National Party
Liz Smith Scottish Conservative Party
Richard Lochhead Scottish National Party
Ross Greer Scottish Green Party
Ross Thomson Scottish Conservative Party
Tavish Scott Scottish Liberal Democrats

Environment, Climate Change and Land Reform[edit]

Name Party
Graeme Dey (Convener) Scottish National Party
Maurice Golden (Deputy Convener) Scottish Conservative Party
Alexander Burnett Scottish Conservative Party
Angus MacDonald Scottish National Party
Claudia Beamish Scottish Labour Party
David Stewart Scottish Labour Party
Emma Harper Scottish National Party
Finlay Carson Scottish Conservative Party
Jenny Gilruth Scottish National Party
Kate Forbes Scottish National Party
Mark Ruskell Scottish Green Party

Health and Sport[edit]

Name Party
Neil Findlay (Convener) Scottish Labour Party
Clare Haughey (Deputy Convener) Scottish National Party
Alex Cole-Hamilton Scottish Liberal Democrats
Alison Johnstone Scottish Green Party
Colin Smyth Scottish Labour Party
Donald Cameron Scottish Conservative Party
Ivan McKee Scottish National Party
Maree Todd Scottish National Party
Miles Briggs Scottish Conservative Party
Richard Lyle Scottish National Party
Tom Arthur Scottish National Party

Justice[edit]

Name Party
Margaret Mitchell (Convener) Scottish Conservative Party
Rona Mackay (Deputy Convener) Scottish National Party
Ben Macpherson Scottish National Party
Douglas Ross Scottish Conservative Party
Fulton MacGregor Scottish National Party
John Finnie Scottish Green Party
Liam McArthur Scottish Liberal Democrats
Mairi Evans Scottish National Party
Mary Fee Scottish Labour Party
Oliver Mundell Scottish Conservative Party
Stewart Stevenson Scottish National Party

Local Government and Communities[edit]

Name Party
Bob Doris (Convener) Scottish National Party
Elaine Smith (Deputy Convener) Scottish Labour Party
Alexander Stewart Scottish Conservative Party
Andy Wightman Scottish Green Party
Graham Simpson Scottish Conservative Party
Kenny Gibson Scottish National Party
Ruth Maguire Scottish National Party

Rural Economy and Connectivity[edit]

Name Party
Edward Mountain (Convener) Scottish Conservative Party
Gail Ross (Deputy Convener) Scottish National Party
Jamie Greene Scottish Conservative Party
John Finnie Scottish Green Party
John Mason Scottish National Party
Mairi Evans Scottish National Party
Mike Rumbles Scottish Liberal Democrats
Peter Chapman Scottish Conservative Party
Rhoda Grant Scottish Labour Party
Richard Lyle Scottish National Party
Stewart Stevenson Scottish National Party

Social Security[edit]

Name Party
Sandra White (Convener) Scottish National Party
Pauline McNeill (Deputy Convener) Scottish Labour Party
Adam Tomkins Scottish Conservative Party
Alison Johnstone Scottish Green Party
Ben Macpherson Scottish National Party
George Adam Scottish National Party
Gordon Lindhurst Scottish Conservative Party
Mark Griffin Scottish Labour Party
Ruth Maguire Scottish National Party

Conveners’ Group[edit]

The Conveners’ Group is a special committee of the Scottish Parliament chaired by either the Presiding Officer of the Scottish Parliament or one of the Deputy Presiding Officers. Its main responsibilities are involved in the administration of Committee expenses and certain other activities.

Name Party
Christine Grahame (Chair and Deputy Presiding Officer) Scottish National Party
Clare Adamson Scottish National Party
Bruce Crawford Scottish National Party
Graeme Dey Scottish National Party
Bob Doris Scottish National Party
James Dornan Scottish National Party
Neil Findlay Scottish Labour Party
Johann Lamont Scottish Labour Party
Gordon Lindhurst Scottish Conservative Party
Joan McAlpine Scottish National Party
Christina McKelvie Scottish National Party
Jenny Marra Scottish Labour Party
Margaret Mitchell Scottish Conservative Party
Edward Mountain Scottish Conservative Party
John Scott Scottish Conservative Party
Sandra White Scottish National Party

Previous Committees[edit]

Private Bill Committees[edit]

A further type of committee is normally set up to scrutinise private bills submitted to the Scottish Parliament by an outside party or promoter who is not a member of the Scottish Parliament or Scottish Government. Private bills normally relate to large-scale development projects such as infrastructure projects that require the use of land or property.[5] Private Bill Committees have been set up to consider legislation on issues such as the development of the Edinburgh Tram Network, the Glasgow Airport Rail Link, the Airdrie-Bathgate Rail Link and extensions to the National Gallery of Scotland.[6]

Burrell Collection (Lending and Borrowing) (Scotland) Bill Committee

City of Edinburgh Council (Leith Links and Surplus Fire Fund) (Scotland) Bill Committee

City of Edinburgh Council (Portobello Park) Bill Committee

Justice Sub-Committee on Policing - Implementation of Police and Fire Reform (Scotland) Act

Subject Committees[edit]

Referendum (Scotland) Bill Committee

Welfare Reform Committee

References[edit]

  1. ^ Dardanelli (2005) p185
  2. ^ a b c d "Committees - Parliamentary Business: Scottish Parliament". Scottish Parliament. Retrieved 2015-04-26. 
  3. ^ "Finance Committee to meet in Perth". Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe). Retrieved 2006-11-22. 
  4. ^ Inquiry into the public petitions process Scottish Parliament Paper 300, 3rd Report, 2009 (Session 3) (PU/S3/09/R3) (Accessed 16.06.2009)
  5. ^ "Private Bills". Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe). Retrieved 2006-11-22. 
  6. ^ "Private Bill Committees". Scottish Parliament Information Centre (SPICe). Retrieved 2006-11-22. 

External links[edit]