Date lodged: 18 January 2018
To ask the Scottish Parliamentary Corporate Body how many Cross-Party Groups there are, and whether consideration will be given to an audit of the number of MSPs attending each meeting.
Answered by: Andy Wightman 25 January 2018
As of 22 January 2018 there are 95 approved Cross-Party Groups. Cross-Party Groups are regulated by Section 6 of the Code of Conduct which falls within the remit of the Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee. 11-13 months after a Group’s initial meeting, and each 11-13 months thereafter, Groups are required to hold an AGM. Within 30 calendar days of the AGM, Groups are required to submit an annual return form. The Group meetings and activities section of the annual return requires Groups to provide details of each meeting of the Group, including the date of the meeting, a brief description of the main subjects discussed and the MSP and non-MSP attendance figures. This is publicly available on the Groups’ webpages on the Parliament website. Groups are also required to provide minutes of each meeting and the minutes must list the MSP and non-MSP attendees. The Standards, Procedures and Public Appointments Committee reviews on an annual basis whether Groups are complying with the Code.