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Have Open Select Committee Meetings, says party

Have Open Select Committee Meetings, says party

6 March 2014

Select Committee meetings should hold all their meetings in public, according to the New Economics Party.

Through a submission to the Select Committee on Standing Orders they are seeking to have more open government and to get Parliament’s practices in line with local government’s.

Spokesperson Deirdre Kent said that Parliament had legislated twenty six years ago to ensure that local authorities had all their meetings in public (with exceptions of commercial sensitivity and protection of privacy), but had not yet done so for themselves.

“We applaud the way that some select committee meetings are to be streamed online and they way that when people give evidence to a select committee they can opt to do it in public session. This is the natural next move towards open government.

“Much of the most important government work is done in Select Committees and the public should know who argues which way.”

Ms Kent said the issue was highlighted for her when as a petitioner who collected over 800 signatures, she was told she could not be there when the committee discussed it. “I would never know why the petition was abandoned, and who argued for or against it. This is unfair on petitioners and is anti-democratic”.

"We appear before the Select Committee on Standing Orders tomorrow at 9.40 am to speak to our submission."

ENDS

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