HC Deb 21 March 2000 vol 346 c854
49. Ms Margaret Moran (Luton, South)

What plans she has to increase the use of information and communication technology in the pre-legislation scrutiny of Bills by the House. [114061]

The Parliamentary Secretary, Privy Council Office (Mr. Paddy Tipping)

It is up to the Committee scrutinising draft legislation to decide how best to use information and communication technology in its work. However, I am sure that hon. Members would be interested in any suggestions from my hon. Friend.

Ms Moran

I thank my hon. Friend for that reply. Will he seriously consider the opportunities offered by e-mail, such as allowing evidence to be taken from a wide range of interests during pre-legislative scrutiny? That would more fully inform our legislative process by obtaining advice from wider groups of people in the community. Would that not enhance pre-legislative scrutiny and inform our policy processes?

Mr. Tipping

I shall follow carefully the experiment on internet use being undertaken by the all-party group on domestic violence, chaired by my hon. Friend. Some Committees use video technology and video conferencing at present; and the internet is used fairly widely. Those are matters for the Committees. Given the advance of technology, she is right that such developments will continue and increase.