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Report No. 60

12.14. Importance of proper publication.-

As observed by Kersell,1 "if a legislature realistically expects such legislation made under its authority to be effective and also controllable, it must make minimal provisions for publicity and for 'laying' so that it may know what has been done under the powers delegated to it." The importance of proper publication of subordinate legislation cannot, therefore, be over-emphasised. If, as is well recognised, subordinate legislation has the full effect of law, it is only elementary justice that those who are sought to be affected by it should become aware of its existence.

As Carr, in his evidence before the Committee on the Minister's Powers observed forcefully,2 "it would be undesirable if it could be said that obscure Clerks in Whitehall pourch forth streams of departmental legislation which nobody had any means of knowing. This would be the method attributed to Calligula of writing his laws in very small characters and hanging them up on high pillars the more effectively to ensnare the people." These observations apply with equal force in the context of subordinate legislation.

1. Kerseel Parliamentary Supervision of Delegated Legislation, (1960), p. 6.

2. Sir Cecil Carr's Evidence, cited in Schwartz Introduction to American Administrative Law, (1958), p. 71.

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