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Session 2003 - 04
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House of Commons Votes and Proceedings
Wednesday 21st April 2004

The House met at half-past Eleven o'clock.

PRAYERS.

1    Mr Peter Pike reported from the Third Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation the draft Merchant Shipping (Convention on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims) (Amendment) Order 2004.

    Minutes of Proceedings of the Committee to lie upon the Table.

2    David Taylor reported from European Standing Committee B the following Resolution:

    That the Committee takes note of European Union Document No. 10243/03, Commission Communication: Towards more accessible, equitable and managed asylum systems; welcomes the Commission's endorsement of the United Kingdom's analysis of the problem; and notes that this is only an interim discussion paper pending the submission by the Commission of a more substantive report by June 2004.

    Report, together with Resolution, to lie upon the Table.

3    Sustainable Communities Bill,-The Order for reading the Sustainable Communities Bill a second time on Friday 23rd April was read and discharged.

    Bill to be read a second time on Friday 18th June.

4    Fireworks (Amendment),-Ordered, That leave be given to bring in a Bill to amend the Fireworks Act 2003: And that Mr George Howarth, Janet Anderson, Mr Joe Benton, Sir Sydney Chapman, Mrs Claire Curtis-Thomas, Mr Elfyn Llwyd, Mr Alan Meale, Dr Lewis Moonie, Mr Edward O'Hara, Dr John Pugh, Mr Bill Tynan and Sir Nicholas Winterton do prepare and bring it in.

5    Fireworks (Amendment) Bill,-Mr George Howarth accordingly presented a Bill to amend the Fireworks Act 2003: And the same was read the first time; and ordered to be read a second time on Friday 18th June and to be printed [Bill 91].

6    Opposition Day [9th allotted day],-It being an allotted day at the disposal of the Leader of the Opposition in pursuance of Standing Order No. 14 (Arrangement of public business), the House proceeded to consider Opposition business.

    Doctors' Hours in the NHS,-A Motion was made, and the Question being proposed, That this House notes the forthcoming implementation of the European Working Time Directive (EWTD) in relation to junior hospital doctors; further notes the changes to General Practitioner out-of-hours services following the implementation of the new GP contract; is concerned by the British Medical Association's estimate that, from August 2004, the EWTD requirements could lose the NHS the equivalent of 3,700 junior doctors; is alarmed by the failure of Ministers to quantify adequately the likely demands of the EWTD in medical manpower and money costs; is further alarmed by the Government's complacency over the 'SIMAP/Jaeger' judgements made by the European Court of Justice and the disproportionate impact they will have on smaller hospitals; notes that cost estimates for GP out-of-hours cover are rising yet the extent of cover is likely to decline; deplores the failure by Ministers to anticipate the impact that the new GP contract will have on community hospitals and notes with alarm that several are already under threat; and wishes to see the implementation of out-of-hours cover in a form that maintains a GP-led service in which the high standards of care and accessibility traditionally associated with primary care in England are maintained-(Mr Andrew Lansley);

    An Amendment was proposed to the Question, in line 2, to leave out from the word 'House' to the end of the Question and add the words 'welcomes the overall aims of the European Working Time Directive (EWTD) to ensure humane working hours for doctors in training; further welcomes the Government's lobbying of the European Commission and other EU Member States which has resulted in the Commission's giving assurances that they will bring forward legislative proposals on the EWTD before the summer; notes the dramatic reduction in the hours of doctors in training which means that 95 per cent. of them now work for 56 hours or fewer; congratulates the Goverment on the increases in workforce numbers and medical school places, which mean there are now almost 7,000 more consultants and 55,000 more nurses than there were in 1997, and that 6,030 students entered medical school in England in autumn 2003; welcomes the work being done in the National Health Service in implementing new ways of working that contribute to modernising and improving services and meeting the obligations of the Directive; and joins the Chairman of the BMA's General Practititioners Committee in welcoming the new GP contract as being 'better for patients and better for everyone working in general practice' and notes that it will allow primary care trusts to offer patients a safe, high quality service, with care delivered by the most appropriate professional, through better use of more joined-up services', instead thereof.-(Mr John Hutton.)

    And the Question being put, That the original words stand part of the Question;

    The House divided.

      Tellers for the Ayes, Gregory Barker, Mr Peter Atkinson: 197.

      Tellers for the Noes, Bridget Prentice, Charlotte Atkins: 303.

    So the Question was negatived.

    And the Question, That the proposed words be there added, being put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 31 (Questions on amendments):-It was agreed to.

    The Deputy Speaker forthwith declared the Main Question, as amended, to be agreed to.

    Resolved, That this House welcomes the overall aims of the European Working Time Directive (EWTD) to ensure humane working hours for doctors in training; further welcomes the Government's lobbying of the European Commission and other EU Member States which has resulted in the Commission's giving assurances that they will bring forward legislative proposals on the EWTD before the summer; notes the dramatic reduction in the hours of doctors in training which means that 95 per cent. of them now work for 56 hours or fewer; congratulates the Goverment on the increases in workforce numbers and medical school places, which mean there are now almost 7,000 more consultants and 55,000 more nurses than there were in 1997, and that 6,030 students entered medical school in England in autumn 2003; welcomes the work being done in the National Health Service in implementing new ways of working that contribute to modernising and improving services and meeting the obligations of the Directive; and joins the Chairman of the BMA's General Practititioners Committee in welcoming the new GP contract as being 'better for patients and better for everyone working in general practice' and notes that it will allow primary care trusts to offer patients a safe, high quality service, with care delivered by the most appropriate professional, through better use of more joined-up services.

    London,-A Motion was made, and the Question being proposed, That this House takes pride in London's heritage and status as a leading global capital city; notes that its outstanding success over many centuries has depended upon its rich mix of people, innovation and energy; further notes that it is an international leader in financial services, the arts, media, higher education, medicine and scientific research and tourism; regrets that this enviable competitive advantage is now threatened by the diminution in the quality of life of Londoners and those who come to work in the capital; recognises that insecurity brought about by the threat of terrorist action and rising levels of crime and anti-social behaviour, failing public services, overcrowded and unreliable transport, alongside an ever increasing tax burden on all Londoners, will undermine the capital's global reputation as a great place to live and do business; and calls upon the Government and its Mayoral candidate, Ken Livingstone, to address the needs of the people of London and improve the quality and choice of services in the capital-(Mr Mark Field);

    An Amendment was proposed to the Question, in line 5, to leave out from the word 'tourism' to the end of the Question and add the words 'welcomes the Government's commitment to London's continuing economic, social and cultural success, and to enhancing its status as a world class city; applauds London's high levels of productivity and success in attracting inward investment that benefits the whole of the UK; recognises that this success is backed by record levels of funding from this Government for education, health, the arts, culture, creative industries, crime prevention, transport and other key public services that have resulted in substantially higher employment, substantially lower unemployment, record police numbers including more community support officers and police on the beat, massive increases in bus services and people using them, with an extra 100 million bus trips and an extra 180 million Tube journeys taken a year; applauds the leadership of the Mayor of London, working in partnership with the Government in the key areas of transport, planning, economic development and policing; praises the work of the police and security services in remaining vigilant to keep the capital safe; and condemns outright Opposition attempts to talk down and undermine the continued success of our great capital city', instead thereof.-(Keith Hill.)

    And the Question being proposed, That the original words stand part of the Question;

    Mr Patrick McLoughlin rose in his place and claimed to move, That the Question be now put.

    And the Question being put, That the Question be now put:-It was agreed to.

    And the Question being accordingly put;

    The House divided.

      Tellers for the Ayes, Gregory Barker, Mr Peter Atkinson: 143.

      Tellers for the Noes, Jim Fitzpatrick, Paul Clark: 308.

    So the Question was negatived.

    And the Question, That the proposed words be there added, being put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 31 (Questions on amendments);

    The House divided.

      Tellers for the Ayes, Paul Clark, Jim Fitzpatrick: 302.

      Tellers for the Noes, Gregory Barker, Mr Peter Atkinson: 169.

    So the Question was agreed to.

    And the Main Question, as amended, being put;

    Resolved, That this House takes pride in London's heritage and status as a leading global capital city; notes that its outstanding success over many centuries has depended upon its rich mix of people, innovation and energy; further notes that it is an international leader in financial services, the arts, media, higher education, medicine and scientific research and tourism; welcomes the Government's commitment to London's continuing economic, social and cultural success, and to enhancing its status as a world class city; applauds London's high levels of productivity and success in attracting inward investment that benefits the whole of the UK; recognises that this success is backed by record levels of funding from this Government for education, health, the arts, culture, creative industries, crime prevention, transport and other key public services that have resulted in substantially higher employment, substantially lower unemployment, record police numbers including more community support officers and police on the beat, massive increases in bus services and people using them, with an extra 100 million bus trips and an extra 180 million Tube journeys taken a year; applauds the leadership of the Mayor of London, working in partnership with the Government in the key areas of transport, planning, economic development and policing; praises the work of the police and security services in remaining vigilant to keep the capital safe; and condemns outright Opposition attempts to talk down and undermine the continued success of our great capital city.

7    Deferred Divisions,-A Motion was made, and the Question being put forthwith, pursuant to Orders [28th June 2001 and 6th November 2003 (Deferred divisions)], That at this day's sitting, the Orders of the House of 28th June 2001 and 6th November 2003 relating to deferred Divisions shall not apply to the Motion in the name of Mr Ben Bradshaw relating to Protection of Animals during Transport-(Mr Jim Murphy):-It was agreed to.

8    Protection of Animals During Transport,-A Motion was made, and the Question being put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 119 (European Standing Committees), That this House takes note of European Documents No. 7969/01 and ADD1, Report from the Commission and draft Regulation on the ventilation in road vehicles, carrying livestock on long journeys and No. 11794/03, Commission Communications and draft Regulation on the protection of animals during transport and related operations and amending Directives 64/432/EEC and 93/119/EEC; and supports the Government's objectives of seeking a significant improvement in animal welfare during transport and better enforcement of those rules throughout the European Union-(Mr Jim Murphy):-It was agreed to.

9    Adjournment,-Resolved, That this House do now adjourn.-(Mr Jim Murphy.)

    And accordingly the House, having continued to sit till four minutes to Eight o'clock, adjourned till to-morrow.

[Adjourned at 7.56 p.m.

Michael J. Martin
Speaker


Mr Speaker will take the Chair at half-past Eleven o'clock.


APPENDIX I

Papers presented or laid upon the Table:

Papers subject to Affirmative Resolution:

    1    European Communities,-Draft European Communities (Definition of Treaties) (Agreement on the Participation of the Czech Republic, the Republic of Estonia, the Republic of Cyprus, the Republic of Latvia, the Republic of Lithuania, the Republic of Hungary, the Republic of Malta, the Republic of Poland, the Republic of Slovenia and the Slovak Republic in the European Economic Area) Order 2004 [by Act], with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Mr Secretary Straw].

Papers subject to Negative Resolution:

    2    Electronic Communications,-Electronic Commerce (EC Directive) (Extension) Regulations 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 1178), dated 19th April 2004 [by Act] [Ms Secretary Hewitt].

    3    Pesticides,-Plant Protection Products (Fees) (Amendment) Regulations 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 1159), dated 17th April 2004 [by Act] [Secretary Margaret Beckett].

    4    Plant Health,-Potatoes Originating in Egypt (England) Regulations 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 1165), dated 19th April 2004 [by Act] [Secretary Margaret Beckett].

    5    Social Security,-Social Security (Miscellaneous Amendments) (No. 2) Regulations 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 1141), dated 14th April 2004 [by Act] [Mr Secretary Smith].

Other Papers:

    6    Public Petitions,-Observations by the Secretary of State for Health on the Petitions [31st March] from citizens of the United Kingdom against the supply to school children of abortifacient birth control drugs and devices [two Petitions] [by Standing Order]; to be printed [Clerk of the House].

Papers withdrawn:

    7    International Immunities and Privileges,-Draft Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (Immunities and Privileges) Order 2004 [laid 4th March].

APPENDIX II

Standing Committees

    1    Draft Competition Act 1998 and Other Enactments (Amendment) Regulations 2004, the draft Competition Act 1998 (Determination of Turnover for Penalties) (Amendment) Order 2004, and the draft Competition Act 1998 (Land Agreements Exclusion and Revocation) Order 2004:

    (1) The Speaker has allocated the draft Orders to the First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation, and has appointed Mr Derek Conway Chairman; and

    (2) the Committee of Selection has nominated sixteen Members to serve on the Committee: Charlotte Atkins, Mr Peter Atkinson, Mr Henry Bellingham, Mr Bob Blizzard, Virginia Bottomley, Malcolm Bruce, Brian Cotter, Mr Hilton Dawson, Dr Hywel Francis, Lynne Jones, Mr Terry Lewis, Mr Peter Lilley, Mr Tony McWalter, Mr John Smith, Ian Stewart and Mr Gerry Sutcliffe.

    2    Draft Non-Domestic Rating (Chargeable Amounts) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2004:

    (1) The Speaker has allocated the draft Regulations to the Second Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation, and has appointed Mr Eric Illsley Chairman; and

    (2) the Committee of Selection has nominated sixteen Members to serve on the Committee: Paul Clark, Mr Edward Davey, Linda Gilroy, Mr Philip Hammond, Mr Doug Henderson, Phil Hope, Helen Jones, John Mann, Mr John Maples, Mr Archie Norman, Mr Malcolm Savidge, Jim Sheridan, Mr Gerry Steinberg, Mr Hugo Swire, Derek Wyatt and Richard Younger-Ross.

    3    Draft Accession (Immigration and Worker Registration) Regulations 2004:

    (1) The Speaker has allocated the draft Regulations to the Third Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation, and has appointed Mr David Taylor Chairman; and

    (2) the Committee of Selection has nominated Sixteen Members to serve on the Committee: Mr Desmond Browne, Mr Geoffrey Clifton-Brown, Mr John Grogan, Mr David Heath, Mr John Heppell, Mr George Howarth, Mr Humfrey Malins, Mr Peter Mandelson, Mr Jim Marshall, Kali Mountford, Mr John Redwood, Bob Russell, Mrs Gillian Shephard, Joan Walley, Dr Alan Whitehead and Mr Shaun Woodward.

    4    Draft Merchant Shipping (Convention on Limitation of Liability for Maritime Claims) (Amendment) Order 2004,-The Committee of Selection has discharged Dr Hywel Francis,Mr Tony McWalter and John Thurso from the Third Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the draft Order) and nominated in substitution Ross Cranston, Matthew Green and Mr David Kidney.

    5    Draft Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty Organization (Immunities and Privileges) Order 2004:

    (1) The Speaker has allocated the draft Order to the Fourth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation, and has appointed Miss Anne Begg Chairman; and

    (2) the Committee of Selection has nominated sixteen Members to serve on the Committee: Mr Colin Breed, Roger Casale, Mr Brian H. Donohoe, Angela Eagle, Jeff Ennis, Mr John Maples, Mr Michael Moore, Mr Jim Murphy, Mr Gordon Prentice, Mr Bill Rammell, Hugh Robertson, Mr Ernie Ross, Andrew Selous, Mr Gary Streeter, Mr Brian Wilson and Tony Worthington.

    6    Limitation of Council Tax and Precepts (Alternative Notional Amounts) Report (England) 2004/05,-The Committee of Selection has discharged Mr David Cameron from the Fourth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the Report) and nominated in substitution Mr Philip Hammond.

    7    Naval Discipline Act 1957 (Remedial) Order 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 66) and the draft Army, Air Force and Naval Discipline Acts (Continuation) Order 2004:

    (1) The Speaker has allocated the Orders to the Fifth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation, and has appointed Mr Alan Hurst Chairman; and

    (2) the Committee of Selection has nominated sixteen Members to serve on the Committee: John Austin, Mr Colin Breed, Mr Ivor Caplin, Mr George Foulkes, Stephen Hesford, Mr Paul Keetch, Andy King, Dr Julian Lewis, Mr Ian Liddell-Grainger, Alice Mahon, Syd Rapson, Hugh Robertson, Joan Ryan, Jon Trickett, Mr Peter Viggers and Mrs Betty Williams.

    8    Value Added Tax (Buildings and Land) Order 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 778),-The Committee of Selection has discharged Ross Cranston, Mr Paul Truswell and Mr Tom Watson from the Fifth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the Order) and nominated in substitution Shona McIsaac, Meg Munn and Ms Gisela Stuart.

    9    Draft European Parliamentary Elections (Northern Ireland) Regulations 2004:

    (1) The Speaker has allocated the draft Regulations to the Seventh Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation, and has appointed Mr Mike Hancock Chairman; and

    (2) the Committee of Selection has nominated sixteen Members to serve on the Committee: Mr Richard Allan, Mr Richard Bacon, Mr Adrian Bailey, Chris Bryant, Mr Ian Cawsey, Mr Vernon Coaker, Mr Stephen Dorrell, Jim Dowd, Julia Drown, Lady Hermon, Judy Mallaber, Jonathan Shaw, Mr John Spellar, Mr Desmond Swayne, Mr Hugo Swire and Paddy Tipping.

    10    Draft Customs and Excise Duties (Travellers' Allowances and Personal Reliefs) (New Member States) Order 2004 (S.I., 2004, No. 1002):

    (1) The Speaker has allocated the draft Order to the Eighth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation, and has appointed Mr Nigel Beard Chairman; and

    (2) the Committee of Selection has nominated sixteen Members to serve on the Committee: Mr Peter Atkinson, Jon Cruddas, Denzil Davies, Mrs Louise Ellman, Jim Fitzpatrick, John Healey, Mr Michael Jack, Mr Brian Jenkins, Norman Lamb, Mr David Laws, Mr Alan Milburn, Mr Mark Prisk, Mr Richard Shepherd, Geraldine Smith, Helen Southworth and Keith Vaz.

APPENDIX III

Reports from Select Committees

    1    Defence, International Development and Trade and Industry,-Part of Minutes of Evidence taken before the Defence, International Development and Trade and Industry Committees [Strategic Export Controls]; to be printed [No. 390-ii] [Mr Roger Berry].

    2    Education and Skills,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Education and Skills Committee [National Skills Strategy: 14-19 Education]; to be printed [No. 197-ix] [Mr Barry Sheerman].

    3    Environment, Food and Rural Affairs,-(1) Seventh Special Report from the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee [Government's Reply to the Third Report from the Committee, Session 2003-04, on Caught in the net: by-catch of small dolphins and porpoises off the UK coast]; to be printed [No. 540]; and

    (2) Memorandum laid before the Committee [Managing radioactive waste safely]

    [Mr Michael Jack].

    4    European Scrutiny,-Seventeenth Report from the European Scrutiny Committee; to be printed, with the Minutes of Proceedings of the Committee relating to the Report [No. 42-xvii] [Mr Jim Marshall].

    5    Northern Ireland Affairs,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee [Hate Crime in Northern Ireland]; to be printed [No. 539-i] [Mr Michael Mates].

    6    Procedure,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Procedure Committee [Programming of Legislation]; to be printed [No. 325-v] [Sir Nicholas Winterton].

    7    Public Accounts,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Committee of Public Accounts [Improving Procurement: Progress by the Office of Government Commerce in improving departments' capability to procure cost-effectively]; to be printed [No. 541-i] [Mr Edward Leigh].

    8    Science and Technology,-(1) Third Special Report from the Science and Technology Committee [Government Response to the Committee's Third Report, Session 2003-04, [The Work of the Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council]; to be printed [No. 526]; and

    (2) Minutes of Evidence taken before the Committee [Scientific Publications]; to be printed [No. 399-iii]

    [Dr Ian Gibson].

    9    Treasury,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Sub-committee of the Treasury Committee [The Administrative Costs of Tax Compliance]; to be printed [No. 269-v] [Mr John McFall].

    10    Welsh Affairs,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Welsh Affairs Committee [Manufacturing and Trade in Wales]; to be printed [No. 323-vi] [Mr Martyn Jones].

    11    Work and Pensions,-(1) Minutes of Evidence taken before the Work and Pensions Committee [Health and Safety]; to be printed [No. 456-iii]; and

    (2) Memoranda laid before the Committee [Miscellaneous]

    [Sir Archy Kirkwood].

[W.H., No. 43]

Minutes of Proceedings of the Sitting in Westminster Hall

The sitting commenced at half-past Nine o'clock.

    Adjournment,-Resolved, That the sitting be now adjourned.-(Gillian Merron.)

    And accordingly the sitting was adjourned till to-morrow.

[Adjourned at 4.42 p.m.

Sir Alan Haselhurst

Deputy Speaker

CORRIGENDUM

    In the Votes and Proceedings for Tuesday 23rd March, in Item 7, the Finance Bill should have been ordered to be printed as Bill 89.



 
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