Magazine article Public Finance

Warning Sounded over Single Scots Scrutiny Body's Remit

Magazine article Public Finance

Warning Sounded over Single Scots Scrutiny Body's Remit

Article excerpt

The convener of an influential parliamentary committee has voiced doubts about the creation of a single scrutiny body for Scotland, warning that it could lead to over-centralisation.

Andrew Welsh, a Scottish National Party MSP who is convener of the Scottish Parliament's finance committee, welcomed the recent independent report by Professor Lome Crerar, which recommended a radical reduction in the number of scrutiny organisations.

However, Welsh warned that there was an Obvious danger' in Crerar's ultimate goal of replacing the existing 63 regulatory bodies with a single scrutiny organisation.

Speaking during a debate in the Parliament, he said: 'Yes, Minister warns us not to create a department of administrative affairs. There is no point replacing over-proliferation with over-centralisation.'

Welsh added that effectiveness and efficiency were the keys to progress in any reform: therefore a single ultimate scrutiny body would have to be clear about its own checks and balances. …

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