Most UK legislation ammends previous legisation. To understand the law as it stands everyone then has to get every Act of Parliament that has "ammended" previousl Acts. The government should provide, on-line, copies of the texts of the Ammended Acts. People can then see, in one document, what the law of the land is. This would make it easier for businesses and the public to read the actaul law in force at the time, which is meant to govern the way they operate.
It would be part of the better "better regulation" agenda to make it easy to read the regulations/laws applicable at the time. One assumes that the relevant government department has laywers who keep consolidated versions of the Acts. These should simply be published.
A good example of the problem is the Electrcity Act 1989 (as ammeneded). The text change usbstaintially under the Utilities Act and the Energy Act and no doubt will change again under the current Energy Bill. If I wanted to enter the market as a new energy supplier I need to work out how all these Acts fit together. This creates a barrier to market entry, inefficiency in each particpant employing lawyers to unravle it and time taken to work out the law.
Why is this idea important?
It would make it eassier for everyone to know what the law is.
It would reduce barriers to makret entry for business
It would make it eassier for regulators and law enforcers to do their jobs
It would reduce costs for business, individulas, regualtors, government and lawyers
It would make it eassier to spot where laws are not working and where the drafting creates problems
It would be good for the environment – people would print less paper to read the law