HC Deb 09 March 1944 vol 397 cc2183-4
45. Mr. De la Bère

asked the Prime Minister whether he can now make some pronouncement as to the steps he proposes to take to reduce the volume of delegated departmental legislation.

The Prime Minister (Mr. Churchill)

This matter is kept under constant review by Departments, and it is their duty to secure the repeal of any subordinate legislation which is obsolete or redundant. No special action is called for on my part.

Mr. De la Bère

Are we to understand from that answer that this departmental legislation, which has been endured with some misgiving as a war expedient, is to be carried on in perpetuity; and may we have some assurance that the Home Secretary's words will not be carried out?

The Prime Minister

I did not notice any reference in my hon. Friend's Question to the Home Secretary.

Mr. De la Bère

The implication is obviously there.

Mr. Kirkwood

With reference to the Prime Minister's use of the stock phrase that this is constantly under review, will he tell the House how many Questions have been put to him that are constantly under review?

The Prime Minister

A certain amount of latitude in the use of stock phrases has always been accorded to every Government as long as I can remember.

Sir H. Williams

Is my right hon. Friend aware that since some of us started to take an interest in delegated legislation, the number of statutory rules and orders has been reduced by one-third?

Mr. Lipson

Is the Home Secretary taking part in the review?

The Prime Minister

There is a Question on the Paper on that subject later on.