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House of Commons
Session 2004 - 05
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House of Commons Votes and Proceedings
Monday 7th March 2005

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

PRAYERS.

1    First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation,—David Taylor reported from the First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation the draft Town and Country Planning (Fees for Applications and Deemed Applications) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2005.

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

2    Second Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation,—Mr Peter Pike reported from the Second Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation the draft Child Benefit and Guardian's Allowance Up-Rating Order 2005, the draft Child Benefit and Guardian's Allowance Up-Rating (Northern Ireland) Order 2005 and the draft Tax Credits Up-Rating Regulations 2005.

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

3    Third Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation,—Derek Conway reported from the Third Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation the draft Public Audit (Wales) Act 2004 (Relaxation of Restriction on Disclosure) Order 2005.

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

4    Fourth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation,—Mr Eric Forth reported from the Fourth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation the draft Immigration (Application Fees) Order 2005.

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

5    Sixteenth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation,—Frank Cook reported from the Sixteenth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation the draft Higher Education (Northern Ireland) Order 2005.

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

6    Income Tax (Trading and Other Income) Bill,—The Order of the day being read, for the House to resolve itself into a Committee on the Income Tax (Trading and Other Income) Bill;

    A Motion was made, and the Question being put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 60 (Tax law rewrite bills), That the Committee of the whole House be discharged from considering the Bill—(Mr John Heppell):—It was agreed to.

    The Bill was read the third time, and passed.

7    Estimates,—A Motion was made, and the Question being put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 145 (Liaison Committee), That this House agrees with the Report [4th March] of the Liaison Committee—(Mr Tom Watson):—It was agreed to.

8    Future European Union Finances,—A Motion was made, and the Question being proposed, That this House takes note of European Union Documents No. 11607/04, Commission Communication: Financial Perspectives 2007-13, No. 11741/1/04, draft Decision on the system of the European Communities' own resources and draft Regulation on the implementing measures for the correction of imbalances, No. 11745/04, draft for renewal of the Inter-Institutional Agreement on budgetary discipline and improvement of the budgetary procedure, and No. 11752/04, Commission Report: Financing the European Union—operation of the own resources system; supports the Government's efforts to refocus the European Community budget towards the Union's key priorities in line with the principles of subsidiarity and European Union value added and stabilise the budget at no more than 1 per cent. of European Union Gross National Income; shares the Government's concern over proposals for new flexibility instruments; opposes the Commission's proposals for a Generalised Correction Mechanism; and in particular supports the Government's view that the Commission's overall proposals are unrealistic and unacceptable—(Mr Stephen Timms);

    An Amendment ((a)) was proposed to the Question, in line 8, to leave out from the word 'system' to the end of the Question and add the words 'and reaffirms the need to continue EU structural funding', instead thereof.—(Adam Price.)

    And the Question being put, That the Amendment be made;

The House divided.

      Tellers for the Ayes, Angus Robertson, Mr Simon Thomas: 2.

      Tellers for the Noes, Mr Tom Watson, Jim Fitzpatrick: 360.

So the Question was negatived. And the Main Question being put; Resolved, That this House takes note of European Union Documents No. 11607/04, Commission Communication: Financial Perspectives 2007-13, No. 11741/1/04, draft Decision on the system of the European Communities' own resources and draft Regulation on the implementing measures for the correction of imbalances, No. 11745/04, draft for renewal of the Inter-Institutional Agreement on budgetary discipline and improvement of the budgetary procedure, and No. 11752/04, Commission Report: Financing the European Union—operation of the own resources system; supports the Government's efforts to refocus the European Community budget towards the Union's key priorities in line with the principles of subsidiarity and European Union value added and stabilise the budget at no more than 1 per cent. of European Union Gross National Income; shares the Government's concern over proposals for new flexibility instruments; opposes the Commission's proposals for a Generalised Correction Mechanism; and in particular supports the Government's view that the Commission's overall proposals are unrealistic and unacceptable.

9    House of Commons Members' Fund (Discretionary Payments),—Resolved, That this House resolves that pursuant to section 4(4) of the House of Commons Members' Fund Act 1948 and section 1(4) of the House of Commons Members' Fund Act 1957, in the year commencing 1st October 2004 there be appropriated for the purposes of section 4 of the House of Commons Members' Fund Act 1948:

    (1) The whole of the sums deducted or set aside in that year under section 1(3) of the House of Commons Members' Fund Act 1939 from the salaries of Members of the House of Commons; and

    (2) The whole of the Treasury contribution to the Fund in that year.—(Dr Howard Stoate.)

10    House of Commons Members' Fund (Uprating of Benefits),—Resolved, That this House resolves that pursuant to section 3 of the House of Commons Members' Fund Act 1948 and section 2 of the House of Commons Members' Fund and Parliamentary Pensions Act 1981 ('the 1981 Act'), the amounts which may be or are to be paid out of the House of Commons Members' Fund specified in the First Schedule to the House of Commons Members' Fund Act 1939 ('the 1939 Act') and in section 2 of the 1981 Act respectively, shall be increased as follows:

    (1) in paragraph 1 of Schedule 1 to the 1939 Act, as amended (limits on discretionary payments to former Members of the House of Commons):

      the amount of 4,574.35 shall be substituted for 3,554;

      the amount of 8,444.66 shall be substituted for 6,561;

      the amount of 8,806.34 shall be substituted for 6,842; and

      the amount of 12,676.65 shall be substituted for 9,849.

    (2) in paragraphs 2 and 2A of that Schedule, as amended (limits on discretionary payments to the widows and widowers of former Members of the House of Commons):

      the amount of 2,858.65 shall be substituted for 2,221;

      the amount of 6,728.96 shall be substituted for 5,228;

      the amount of 5,504.93 shall be substituted for 4,277; and

      the amount of 9,375.24 shall be substituted for 7,284.

    (3) paragraphs (1) and (2) shall have effect from the date of this Resolution.

    (4) with effect from the dates there specified, the amounts set out in the attached Schedule shall be substituted for the amounts mentioned in section 2(1) of the 1981 Act, as amended (payments to eligible former Members of the House of Commons who have not been Members since 15th October 1964 or to their widows or widowers).

    (5) on each 1st April, from 2005 onwards, the amounts of the limits applicable to payments under section 1 of the 1939 Act and of the payments specified in section 2 of the 1981 Act shall be increased by the relevant percentage and the amounts in the said sections 1 and 2 shall be replaced accordingly.

    (6) the relevant percentage to be applied each April is the percentage change over 12 months in the retail price index as at the previous September.

    The Schedule

    Effective date
Former Member's rate Widow's/Widower's rate
    1st April 1995
    1st April 1996
    1st April 1997
    1st April 1998
    1st April 1999
    1st April 2000
    1st April 2001
    1st April 2002
    1st April 2003
    1st April 2004
2,116.00
2,198.64
2,244.84
2,325.72
2,400.12
2,426.52
2,506.56
2,549.28
2,592.62
2,665.21
1,323.00 1,374.60
1,403.52
1,454.16
1,500.60
1,517.16
1,567.20
1,593.84
1,620.94
1,666.32

    —(Dr Howard Stoate.)

11    Social Security,—A Motion was made, and the Question being put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 118 (Standing Committees on Delegated Legislation), That the draft Social Security (Intensive Activity Period 50 to 59 Pilot) Regulations 2005, which were laid before this House on 2nd February, be approved—(Paul Clark):—It was agreed to.

12    Social Security,—A Motion was made, and the Question being put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 118 (Standing Committees on Delegated Legislation), That the draft Social Security (Intensive Activity Period 50 to 59 Pilot) (No. 2) Regulations 2005, which were laid before this House on 2nd February, be approved—(Paul Clark):—It was agreed to.

13    Protecting the European Community's Financial Interests,—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 Union Documents No. OJ C 293, the European Court of Auditors' 2003 Annual Report, No. 14549/04, Commission staff working paper: Complementary evaluation of the activities of the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF), No. 11981/04 and Addenda 1 and 2, Commission Report: Protecting the Communities' financial interests and the fight against fraud—Annual Report 2003, and No. 11890/04, Commission Communication: Protecting the Communities' financial interests—Fight against fraud—Action Plan for 2004-05; and supports the Government's promotion of measures to improve financial management of the Community budget and to reduce fraud against the European Community's financial interests—(Paul Clark):—It was agreed to.

14    Business of the House,—Ordered, That, at the sitting on Wednesday 9th March, notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (3)(a) of Standing Order No. 54 (Consideration of estimates), consideration of the Estimates set down for that allotted half day may be proceeded with, though opposed, for three hours, when proceedings shall be interrupted unless previously concluded; and on the interruption or conclusion of the proceedings, as the case may be, the Speaker shall proceed to put the questions which, under the provisions of paragraph (5) of Standing Order No. 54 and of paragraph (1) of Standing Order No. 55 (Questions on voting of estimates, &c), would otherwise fall to be put at the moment of interruption.—(Paul Clark.)

15    Business of the House,—Ordered, That, at the sitting on Thursday 10th March, the Speaker shall put the Questions necessary to dispose of proceedings on the Motion in the name of Mr Peter Hain relating to Support for Members who have chosen not to take their seats not later than three hours after their commencement; such Questions shall include the Questions on any Amendments selected by the Speaker which may then be moved; proceedings may continue, though opposed, after the moment of interruption; and Standing Order No. 41A (Deferred divisions) shall not apply.—(Paul Clark.)

16    Sittings of the House,—Ordered, That, at the sitting on Thursday 10th March, the Speaker shall not adjourn the House until any message from the Lords has been received, any Committee to draw up Reasons which has been appointed at that sitting has reported, and he has notified the Royal Assent to Acts agreed upon by both Houses.—(Paul Clark.)

17    Public Petitions,—A Public Petition from members of the Turner and Newall Pension Fund and their supporters for action to deal with the projected shortfall in the fund was presented and read; and ordered to lie upon the Table and to be printed.

18    Public Petitions,—A Public Petition from residents of High Folkestone, Hythe and the surrounding area against the proposed closure of the New Romney Jobcentre was presented; and ordered to lie upon the Table and to be printed.

19    Adjournment,—Resolved, That this House do now adjourn.—(Paul Clark.)

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

[Adjourned at 8.26 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    Northern Ireland,—Draft Electoral Law Act (Northern Ireland) 1962 (Amendment No. 3) Order 2005 [by Act], with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Mr Secretary Murphy].

2    Regulatory Reform,—Draft Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, with a Statement by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister [by Act] [Mr Secretary Prescott].

Papers subject to Negative Resolution:

3    Government Resources and Accounts,—Whole of Government Accounts (Designation of Bodies) Order 2005 (S.I., 2005, No. 486), dated 7th March 2005 [by Act], with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Mr Paul Boateng].

4    Housing,—Castle Vale Housing Action Trust (Dissolution) Order 2005 (S.I., 2005, No. 411), dated 28th February 2005 [by Act], with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Mr Secretary Prescott].

5    National Health Service,—Cambridge University Hospitals National Health Service Foundation Trust (Transfer of Trust Property) Order 2005 (S.I., 2005, No. 398), dated 26th February 2005 [by Act] [Mr Secretary Reid].

6    Water Industry,—Water Industry (Determination of Turnover for Penalties) Order 2005 (S.I., 2005, No. 477), dated 3rd March 2005 [by Act], with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Secretary Margaret Beckett].

Other Papers:

7    Constitutional Affairs,—Government Response to the First Report from the Constitutional Affairs Committee, Session 2004-05, on the Constitutional Reform Bill [Lords]: the Government's proposals [by Command] [Cm. 6488] [Mr Christopher Leslie].

8    Environment, Food and Regional Affairs,—Paper, entitled The UK Government Sustainable Development Strategy [by Command] [Cm. 6467] [Secretary Margaret Beckett].

9    National Audit,—Reports by the Comptroller and Auditor General on—

    (1) Citizen Redress: What citizens can do if things go wrong with public services;

    (2) Department of Health: The NHS Cancer Plan: A Progress Report; and

    (3) Ministry of Defence: Quality of Housing Services to Service Families Overseas

    [by Act]; to be printed [Nos. 21, 343 and 342] [Clerk of the House].

10    Northern Ireland,—Northern Ireland Office Minutes, dated—

    (1) February 2005, concerning a contingent liability in relation to the Inquiry into the Death of Billy Wright;

    (2) February 2005, concerning a contingent liability in relation to the Inquiry into the Death of Robert Hamill; and

    (3) March 2005, concerning a contingent liability in relation to the Inquiry into the Death of Rosemary Nelson

    [by Command] [Mr Secretary Murphy].

APPENDIX II

Standing Committees

1    Draft Town and Country Planning (Fees for Applications and Deemed Applications) (Amendment) (England) Regulations 2005,—The Committee of Selection has discharged Mrs Barbara Roche from the First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the draft Regulations) and nominated in substitution Tony Worthington.

2    Draft Public Audit (Wales) Act 2004 (Relaxation of Restriction on Disclosure) Order 2005,—The Committee of Selection has discharged Mr Hilton Dawson, Chris Ruane and Llew Smith from the Third Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the draft Order) and nominated in substitution Chris Bryant, Mr Wayne David and Mark Tami.

3    Draft Child Support (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2005,—The Committee of Selection has discharged Mr David Willetts from the Eighth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the draft Regulations) and nominated in substitution Mr Paul Goodman.

4    Draft Renewables Obligation Order 2005,—The Speaker has appointed Mr Joe Benton Chairman of the Fifteenth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation in respect of the draft Order, in place of Frank Cook.

5    Draft Higher Education (Northern Ireland) Order 2005,—The Committee of Selection has discharged Kevin Brennan, Lembit pik and Gareth Thomas from the Sixteenth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the draft Order) and nominated in substitution Mr Don Foster, Sin Thomas and David Wright.

APPENDIX III

Reports from Select Committees

1    Office of the Deputy Prime Minister: Housing, Planning, Local Government and the Regions,—Minutes of Evidence taken before the Urban Affairs Sub-Committee of the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister: Housing, Planning, Local Government and the Regions Committee [Ward Boundaries]; to be printed [No. 315-i] [Christine Russell].

2    Public Accounts,—Minutes of Evidence taken before the Committee of Public Accounts [Progress in tackling homelessness]; to be printed [No. 428-i] [Mr Edward Leigh].



 
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