Power to require rules to be made

Part of Courts and Tribunals (Online Procedure) Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 10:15 am on 23rd July 2019.

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Photo of Paul Maynard Paul Maynard The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Justice 10:15 am, 23rd July 2019

The hon. Member for Hammersmith makes a valiant effort to ask why we should retain these clauses. For all the reasons I have set out, I beg to differ that this is not the place to attempt constitutional innovation. That is not how the other procedure committees function either.

The hon. Member for Cambridge makes a perfectly valid point, but this is not the place to achieve his objective. HMCTS, being in charge of a £1 billion court reform programme, is subject not just to the scrutiny of the Justice Committee, on which the hon. Member for Hammersmith sits, but that of the Public Accounts Committee and mine as Minister.

There are vast reams of evaluation, picking up what is and is not working. There are also vast reams on how to evaluate, to establish what is and is not working. There is no lack of scrutiny. The online procedure rule committee has had to look at what rules should govern the operation of the IT, but HMCTS has the ultimate responsibility of examining whether a particular online tool functions.