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WESTMINSTER WATCH

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Parliament eyes up special adviser code ...
Parliament eyes up special adviser code

The relationship between special advisers and the rest of government has come under close parliamentary scrutiny as a direct result of internal feuding in the DTLR.

Both the Public Administration Committee and the Committee for Standards in Public Life are looking at whether roles and expectations are clear enough, and whether a civil service code should be added to the existing ministerial and special adviser codes.

The Committee for Standards in Public Life is to publish lines of inquiry for a hearing into the relationship between ministers, civil servants and special advisers on Monday.

The Public Administration Committee heard evidence on the relationships between civil service press officers and special advisers.

Government information service head Mike Granatt, FDA general secretary Jonathan Baume and Professor Stuart Weir of the Democratic Audit were expected to give evidence.

Interest rules up for change

Regulations to allow councillors with an interest to join meetings under exceptional circumstances have been laid before Parliament.

The regulations will override the code of conduct only where enough councillors are excluded to make a meeting inquorate or disturb the political balance.

Under the rules, which form part of the Local Government Act 2000, members will be allowed to speak and vote at meetings where they would otherwise be excluded.

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