Sub-delegation

31.50It is often the case that Measures contain provisions enabling schemes, regulations or orders to be made under them, so that these documents stand in the same general relationship to Measures as statutory instruments to their parent Act. These schemes, etc, are not invariably subject in terms of the Measure to parliamentary scrutiny, and unless the Statutory Instruments Act 1946 is applicable, any expression of parliamentary disapproval would have no necessary effect. The matter of sub-delegation was considered by a sub-committee of the Ecclesiastical Committee in 1930, when it was concluded that sub-delegation should be restricted within the closest limits, and the subjects upon which such schemes or regulations might be made should be clearly defined. It recommended that such powers should be carefully scrutinised by the Ecclesiastical Committee.1

Measures may provide in terms for forms of parliamentary control over schemes or other documents made under them.2 A number of Measures provide that once the General Synod has agreed to a scheme or other document under those Measures, the Statutory Instruments Act 1946 shall apply to that scheme or other document as if they were statutory instruments and as if the Measure were an Act providing that the scheme or document should be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of either House of Parliament.3

Footnotes

  1. 1. Ecclesiastical Committee, Minutes of Proceedings I, 379–82; see 236th Report, HL 91, HC 749 (2017–19) paras 17–19 for an analogous discussion of a Legislative Reform Measure which is intended to make it possible to remove or reduce burdens resulting from ecclesiastical legislation by way of order made by the Archbishops' Council, with the approval of the General Synod and subject to annulment by either House of Parliament, rather than going through the legislative process that applies to Measures.
  2. 2. See Second Special Report from the Commons Statutory Instruments Committee, HC 7-v (1953–54).
  3. 3. For example, Faculty Jurisdiction Measure 1964; Clergy Pensions (Amendment) Measure 1972. Certain schemes made under the Ecclesiastical Fees Measure 1962 may amend private, personal or local Acts, but before coming into effect, they are to be laid by the Church Commissioners before Parliament, and only part of the Statutory Instruments Act 1946 is to apply to them.