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Flashcards in Devolution Deck (35)
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What is a definition of devolution?

The transfer / delegation of power to a lower level, especially by central government to local or regional administration

( oxford university press)


Why did devolution happen?

For better parliamentary legitimacy
For WP to understand the social needs of the other countries
More democratic accountability

Lack of representation
Lack of accountability/legitimacy
Lack of response to a specific issue within a specific nation


What did WP pass following the Belfast agreement ?

Northern Ireland Act 1998


How many members does the NI Assembly have and what are the main characteristics?

108 members( 6 from each of the 18 constituencies)
They are called members of the legislative assembly( MLAs)
Unicameral legislature


How are NI MLAs elected?

Single Transferable vote- every 5 years.
( proportional representation


What system does NI use for voting on laws involving important or controversial issues?

Cross- community support.
S4(5) NIA 1998 states
a) the support of majority of members voting. E.g. Majority of designated Nationalists voting and majority of designated Unionists voting.
b) 60% of members voting. 40% nationalists, 40% unionists.


What is the NI government called and what are its characteristics?

The NI Executive
Led jointly by the First Minister and Deputy 1st minister( posts filled by opposing sides)
2 junior ministers
11 departmental ministers( chosen on prop representation of the parties using the d'hondt formula


What is the d'hondt formula?

Under the formula, 1 minister ( the justice minister) is elected from the assembly on the basis of a cross - community vote.


What type of devolved power model does NI have?

The NI assembly has a reserved power model.
Anything that is not reserved or excepted can be legislated on


Which section of the NI Act 1998 challenges the assembly or executive if it is felt to have acted outside legislative competence?

It can be challenged under s10 of the NI Act 1998


How are human rights embedded in the NI Act 1998?

As part of the Belfast agreement.
S24- provisions set out
S68-created the NI HR commission
S73-created the equality commission for NI
S75-provided protection for personal characteristics.


Which Acts of parliament were abolished to form a single parliament involving Scotland and England.

English Parliaments union with Scotland Act 1706
Scottish parliaments union with England Act 1707


What happened to Scotland following the 1997 referendum?

The Scotland Act 1998, establishing a Scottish Parliament with leg powers.


What are the characteristics of the Scottish Parliament?

It has 129 MSPS ( members of the Scottish Parliament)
Elections held every 5 years
Elected through first past the post and the additional member system ( proportional Rep)


How does the Scottish Parliament create laws?

Sect 28-36 SA 1998 sets out process
1 bills general principles discussed by parliamentary committee and a vote is taken in parliament
2 bill considered in detail by parliamentary committee
3 the bill is considered for a final time by parliament and rejected or passed but still needing royal assent


What are the Scottish governments characteristics?

Has a first minister( elected by SP)
ministers appointed by the first minister
The Lord Advocate
Solicitor General for Scotland


What model does the Scottish Parliament follow?

A reserved powers model
An area not reserved is deemed to be devolved
Set out in S5 Scotland Act 1998


What was the Vow?

In the event of a no vote in the 2014 Scottish independence referendum, the three main U.K. Political parties pledged to increase Scottish powers.


What did the Smith commission recommend?

Many of the recommendations were implemented into the 2016 SA.
They could set thresholds and rates if Income tax
Have control over half of vat
Transfer of welfare powers such as universal credit payments
Powers to set rules relating to benefits


What was a key characteristic of the Scotland Act 2016?

S1 - highlights the permanence of the Scottish Parliament and Government. Therefore, it can only be abolished following a decision of the people of Scotland who vote in a referendum


What is legislative competence?

That a Parliament cannot create laws on reserved matters of Westminster Parliament


Why was the Martin( Sean) v HM Advocates and Millar ( Ross) v HM Advocate[ 2010] UKSC 10 important

It was the 1st case to consider legislative competence of SP to matters that were not convention rights.
? If Scotland had power to increase maximum sentence for certain driving offences. They could deal with justice but the RTA 1988 was reserved.
Supreme Court held that Scotland did have the power.


What was the Welsh white paper called regarding Welsh devolution?

A voice for wales


Following the referendum what did Westminster parliament pass?

The Government of Wales Act 1998
It established the Welsh assembly.


How many members and how are the elected in the Welsh assembly?

There are 60 members. 40 constituency and 20 regional seats.
Members are elected through the additional member system
They are referred to as assembly members or AMs


What type of powers model does wales have?

A conferred powers model
( however the wales act 2017 has now made it a transferred model)


What year was the Richard Commission and what did it do?

2002, it reviewed the legislative powers and the Welsh assembly electoral arrangement. The report was published in 2004 and led to the wales Act 2006


What changes were made in the Wales Act 2006?

It gave the assembly power to ask permission to create primary legislation on devolved issues through ' measures '
It separated the executive and legislature. Now National Assembly for wales and Welsh assembly government.


What year was the silk commission and what did it suggest?

2012 report released 2014
That wales should have the same power model at NI and Scotland.
And looked at fiscal powers


What Act was created following the silk commission ?

The Wales Act 2014