Select committees regularly appointed

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38.62Short descriptions of those select committees regularly or frequently appointed are set out below. Except where otherwise indicated, they have all the powers listed at para 38.1. While all select committees are subject to the same basic governing rules and principles, they have a range of kinds of functions given to them by the House and these affect the ways different committees operate. It is useful, in describing the committees briefly, to look at them in four groups, broadly according to these roles:

  • those charged primarily with scrutinising government policy, administration and expenditure;
  • those charged primarily with assisting the House in its scrutiny of secondary legislation and other instruments of a legislative or quasi-legislative nature (including European legislation);
  • those with a primarily internal role in relation to House business or administration; and
  • other committees appointed in the past.

The attribution of different committees between these groups is only indicative; for example, several committees not listed in the first group (in particular European Scrutiny, Petitions Committees and Liaison Committees) have explicit roles or powers linked to scrutiny of government in addition to their other tasks; and some committees in the first group have explicit roles in relation to the legislative and quasi-legislative responsibilities referred to in the second (in particular, the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Committee (regulatory and legislative reform orders) and various departmental committees (national policy statements under the Planning Act 2008)).