European Journal of Law Reform

Article

Post-Legislative Scrutiny in New Zealand

A Focus on Delegated Legislation

Keywords post-legislative scrutiny, regulations review, parliamentary oversight, New Zealand, law reform proposals, comparative law
Authors Charles Chauvel
Author's information

341823 Charles Chauvel
Charles Chauvel is a Former Member of Parliament, New Zealand and Official of the United Nations.
  • Abstract

      In New Zealand, a scheme for the political post-legislative scrutiny of delegated legislation has operated since 1989. The Regulations Review Committee of the House of Representatives systematically considers delegated legislation and may inquire into matters relating to it. By convention the Committee is chaired by a member of an opposition party and is supported by a dedicated secretariat. It may, on grounds that go beyond vires, draw the attention of the House to any provision of any regulation. If one of its members moves to disallow a statutory instrument, and if debate on the member’s motion is not brought on within a specified period, the instrument ceases to have legal effect. The note considers aspects of the Committee’s jurisdiction, and whether the successful operation of the Committee may have led to excess focus on the scrutiny of delegated legislation at the expense of the systemic post-enactment scrutiny of primary legislation.

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