Bill Committees consider proposed Acts of Parliament. A Public or Private Bill Committee is appointed for each Bill that goes through Parliament. Depending on its complexity, the consideration of a Bill can take between a few minutes to a few months.
When a Bill has received its Second Reading in the House of Commons, it reaches the Committee stage. The Bill is then usually sent to a public bill committee for consideration.
The job of Public Bill Committees is to debate and consider amendments to a Bill. The Committee considers each Bill clause by clause, and may amend it (the House then considers the Bill as amended at the Bill's Report Stage).
Each committee is assigned a chairman and debate Bills as they would do in the Commons chamber, with broadly the same rules of debate applying. Public Bill Committees have the power to take written and oral evidence from officials and experts outside of Parliament. This is intended to give Committee members more information on which to make their decisions.
The proportion of Members in a Public Bill Committee mirrors the political parties' proportion in the Commons, so there is always a Government majority.
Christopher has been a member of the following Bill Committees:
Armed Forces Bill Committee