Committees are panels of the House or Senate created to do the initial review of proposed legislation and to decide which measures are worthy of further consideration by the full House or Senate. The committees are each assigned various policy categories to handle, known as jurisdiction. The House and Senate each have about 20 permanent standing committees. The House and Senate also have select committees and joint committees. Every Representative in the House is assigned to work on an average of two committees; Senators are assigned to an average of four. Members are expected to become specialists in the subject matter under their committeeâ€™s jurisdiction.
Groups of senators or representatives appointed by the presiding officers to act on bills in a certain area of interest.
Joint legislative committees appointed to study a specific problem between sessions, to report to the Legislature before a certain date with recommendations. Such committees are usually created by joint resolution.
House of Commons committees are composed of both Government and opposition members. There are three basic types of committees: legislative committees, which examine bills after second reading in the House standing committees, which study certain issues, documents, departments or estimates throughout the duration of the Parliament, and special committees, which are appointed to inquire into specific matters. Joint committees include members from both the Senate and the House of Commons. Two kinds exist: standing joint committees and special joint committees. Senate committees have three main functions: to study proposed legislation in detail, to investigate policy matters and to examine the Government's spending proposals, called the Estimates. At the end of an investigation, a committee report is presented to the full Senate. There are two basic types of Senate committees: standing committees, permanent committees that correspond broadly with areas of public policy and legislation, and special committees, temporary committees that focus on particular areas of study assigned to them by the Senate.
Groups of senators or representatives, who are appointed by their respective presiding officers, hear testimony and/or deliberate on pending legislation in specific areas, e.g., finance.