Classes of information published or made available
The Better Regulation Commission
The Better Regulation Commission is an independent advisory body whose
terms of reference are:
'To advise the Government on action to:
reduce unnecessary regulatory and administrative burdens; and
ensure that regulation and its enforcement are proportionate,
accountable, consistent, transparent and targeted'
The work of the Commission will include:
Challenging departments and regulators to ensure that regulation, and its
enforcement accord with the five Principles of Good Regulation -
proportionality, accountability, consistency, transparency and targeting;
Vetting plans from departments and regulators to reduce administrative
Scrutinising progress by departments and regulators to reduce wider
regulatory burdens, including use of alternatives and deregulation;
Investigating specific regulatory and policy issues and making
recommendations to Government through published independent reports for
Government to respond to within 60 days;
Working with business and other external stakeholders in EU Member
States, and the EU institutions, to promote better regulation in Europe.
The scope of the work carried out by the Commission will cover the private
sector, public sector, voluntary sector and EU regulatory issues.
Commission members are appointed by the Minister for the Cabinet Office, in
accordance with the Office of the Commissioner for Public Appointments Code
Purpose of this Publication Scheme
The aim of this Publication Scheme is to explain what information the
Better Regulation Commission makes available to the public, and wherever
possible provide an easy method of accessing this information. Under the
Freedom of Information Act 2000, every public authority has a duty to
specify what information they publish (in terms of "information
classes"), how this information is made available, and whether it is
available free of charge or on payment.
The scheme brings together the many different types of information produced
by the Better Regulation Commission in a clear and structured way. It
classifies the information by type and provides details on how to obtain
it. The aim is to save you time and effort.
As well as describing the classes of information the Commission publishes, it sets out
which information is available under this banner. Having found reference to
a document, you may then be able to access it through the website. Where
direct access is not possible you will be told how the information can be
Who is responsible for maintaining the publication
The Secretary to the Better Regulation Commission Manmit Bhambra, is
responsible for administering the scheme. Enquiries and requests for
information should be directed to Sally McCann, who
maintains the scheme on a day-to-day basis.
If you are not satisfied with the content of this publication scheme, or
are unhappy with the way it is being administered please contact Peter Horne, Head of
the Commission Secretariat.
Better Regulation Commission
Telephone: 020 7276 2142
Classes of Information Published or Made Available
The Better Regulation Commission publishes or makes available information
under the classes listed below:
Guidance to members
The membership of the Better Regulation Commission, including brief
biographies and a register of their interests.
Information on the Commission’s role; objectives; and ways of working.
Agenda and minutes of the monthly Commission meetings are available on
The Commission publishes an Annual Report which summarises that year’s
activity. Hard copies are available on request.
Background to Policy
Current projects and stakeholder consultations
Details of the reviews underway; their
terms of reference; who is working on the review; the process of the
review; the stage they have reached; and who to contact for further
The text of Better Regulation Commission submissions to consultations issued
by government Departments and other public bodies.
The Commission publishes reports making recommendations to government.
These are available in hard copy on request, with electronic copies
available on the website.
responses to these reports are published in full.
Progress tables setting out what the Government has done to implement the
recommendations of each of our reports.
Code of Practice For Board Members of The Better
Public service values
The Better Regulation Commission is an advisory non-departmental public
body (NDPB). The board must at all times:
observe the highest standards of impartiality, integrity and objectivity
in relation to the advice they provide and the management of this public
be accountable to Parliament and the public more generally for its
activities and for the standard of advice it provides; and
in accordance with Government policy on openness, comply fully with the
Code of Practice on Access to Government Information.
The Minister for the Cabinet Office is answerable to Parliament for the
policies and performance of this body, including the policy framework
within which it operates.
Standards in Public Life
All board members must:
follow the Seven Principles of Public Life set out by the Committee on
Standards in Public Life (annexed);
comply with this Code, and ensure they understand their duties, rights
and responsibilities, and that they are familiar with the function and
role of this body and any relevant statements of Government policy;
not misuse information gained in the course of their public service for
personal gain or for political purpose, nor seek to use the opportunity
of public service to promote their private interests or those of
connected persons, firms, businesses or other organisations; and
not hold any paid or high-profile unpaid posts in a political party, and
not engage in specific political activities on matters directly affecting
the work of this body. When engaging in other political activities, board
members should be conscious of their public role and exercise proper
discretion. These restrictions do not apply to MPs, to local councillors,
or to Peers in relation to their conduct in the House of Lords
Role of board members
Members of the board have collective responsibility for the operation of
this body. They must:
engage fully in collective consideration of the issues, taking account of
the full range of relevant factors, including any guidance issued by
Cabinet Office or its Minister;
ensure that the Code of Practice on Access to Government Information
(including prompt responses to public requests for information) is
adhered to; agree an Annual Report; and make the proceedings of meetings
available to the public;
respond appropriately to complaints, if necessary with reference to
Cabinet Office; and
ensure that the board does not exceed its powers or functions.
Communications between the board and the Minister will generally be through
the Chair except where the board has agreed that an individual member
should act on its behalf. Nevertheless, any board member has the right of
access to Ministers on any matter which he or she believes raises important
issues relating to his or her duties as a board member. In such cases the
agreement of the rest of the board should normally be sought.
Individual board members can normally be removed from office by the
Minister if they fail to perform the duties required of them in line with
the standards expected in public office.
The role of the Chair
The Chair has particular responsibility for providing effective leadership
on the issues above. In addition, the Chair is responsible for:
ensuring that the board meets at appropriate intervals, and that the
minutes of meetings and any reports to the Minister for the Cabinet
Office accurately record the decisions taken and, where appropriate, the
views of individual board members;
representing the views of the board to the general public; and
ensuring that new board members are briefed on appointment (and their
training needs considered), and providing an assessment of their
performance, on request, when members are considered for re-appointment
to the board or for appointment to the board of some other public body.
Handling conflicts of interests
The purpose of these provisions is to avoid any danger of board members
being influenced, or appearing to be influenced, by their private interests
in the exercise of their public duties. All board members should therefore
declare any personal or business interest which may, or may be perceived
(by a reasonable member of the public) to, influence their judgement. This
should include, as a minimum, personal direct and indirect pecuniary
interests, and should normally also include, such interests of close family
members and of people living in the same household. Members must keep their
declarations up-to-date. The register is open to the public at
www.brc.gov.uk A declaration of any interest should also be made at any
board meeting if it relates specifically to a particular issue under
consideration, for recording in the minutes (whether or not a board member
also withdraws from the meeting).
Board members should not participate in the discussion or determination of
matters in which they have an interest, and should normally withdraw from
the meeting if:
their interest is direct and pecuniary; or
their interest is covered in specific guidance issued by this body or
Cabinet Office which requires them not to participate and/or to withdraw
from the meeting.
Personal liability of board members
Legal proceedings by a third party against individual board members of
advisory bodies are very exceptional. A board member may be personally
liable if he or she makes a fraudulent or negligent statement which results
in a loss to a third party; or may commit a breach of confidence under
common law or a criminal offence under insider dealing legislation, if he
or she misuses information gained through their position. However, the
Government has indicated that individual board members who have acted
honestly, reasonably, in good faith and without negligence will not have to
meet out of their own personal resources any personal civil liability which
is incurred in execution or purported execution of their board functions.
Board members who need further advice should consult the Secretariat, who
will seek advice from Cabinet Office.
Elections and Referendums
Prior to any UK local or national election or referendum certain
restrictions will apply to board members’ activities for the 28-day
period ending with the date of the poll.
The restrictions, under the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums
Act 2000, are that:
For local elections, Board members are prohibited from publishing
material that would impact on any local issues raised.
For General Elections, Board members are prohibited from publishing any
material that would impact on any of the issues raised.
For referendums, Board members are prohibited from publishing material
which deals with any of the issues raised by the question posed in a
Board members may only participate in a referendum campaign - whether for
a "Yes" or "No" vote - in their capacity as private
citizens. All Board Members should avoid engaging in specific activities
on matters directly affecting the work of the body of which they are a
Annex: The Seven Principles Of Public Life
Holders of public office should take decisions solely in terms of the
public interest. They should not do so in order to gain financial or other
material benefits for themselves, their family, or their friends.
Holders of public office should not place themselves under any financial or
other obligation to outside individuals or organisations that might
influence them in the performance of their official duties.
In carrying out public business, including making public appointments,
awarding contracts, or recommending individuals for rewards and benefits,
holders of public office should make choices on merit.
Holders of public office are accountable for their decisions and actions to
the public and must submit themselves to whatever scrutiny is appropriate
to their office.
Holders of public office should be as open as possible about all the
decisions and actions that they take. They should give reasons for their
decisions and restrict information only when the wider public interest
Holders of public office have a duty to declare any private interests
relating to their public duties and to take steps to resolve any conflicts
arising in a way that protects the public interests.
Holders of public office should promote and support these principles by
leadership and example.
Find out more about the Commission and the publication scheme in Frequently Asked Questions.