The Committees of the European Parliament
In order to do the preparatory work for Parliament’s plenary sittings, the Members are divided up among a number of specialised standing committees. There are 20 parliamentary committees. A committee consists of between 25 and 81 MEPs, and has a chair, a bureau and a secretariat. The political makeup of the committees reflects that of the plenary assembly.
The parliamentary committees meet once or twice a month in Brussels. Their debates are held in public.
The committees draw up, amend and adopt legislative proposals and own-initiative reports. They consider Commission and Council proposals and, where necessary, draw up reports to be presented to the plenary assembly.
Parliament can also set up sub-committees and special temporary committees to deal with specific issues, and is empowered to create formal committees of inquiry under its supervisory remit to investigate allegations of maladmistration of EU law. The committee chairs coordinate the work of the committees in the Conference of Committee Chairs.