This chapter examines the legislative machinery of executive government and its purposes. It begins by outlining the basic machinery of internal control, distinguishing between primary and secondary legislation, before concentrating on two developments which have given rise to an increase in central co-ordination and control in recent years. The first is the United Kingdom's membership since 1973 of the European Communities, now the European Union. The second is concern with the burdens imposed on business by legislation. In addition, two developments which have had a major impact on the legislative machinery of government—the United Kingdom's membership of the European Union and the concern with burdens on business—are explored. It is shown that the collective interest in government being driven to seek closer control over departmental law-making ensures conformity with ‘European’ law, assures that legal effectiveness is not compromised as a result of the increasing scope of the legislative powers in departmental hands, and reduces regulatory burdens on business.
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