Standing Orders of the House of Commons - Public Business 2001 - continued        House of Commons

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  A P P E N D I X

  SUB JUDICE
Resolution of 23 July 1963      Resolved, That, subject always to the discretion of the Chair and to the right of the House to legislate on any matter,
 
      (1) matters awaiting or under adjudication in all courts exercising a criminal jurisdiction and in courts martial should not be referred to-
 
 
    (a) in any Motion (including a Motion for leave to bring in a Bill), or
 
    (b) in debate, or
 
    (c) in any question to a Minister including a supplementary question;
      (2) matters awaiting or under adjudication in a civil court should not be referred to-
 
 
    (a) in any Motion (including a Motion for leave to bring in a Bill), or
 
    (b) in debate, or
 
    (c) in any question to a Minister including a supplementary question from the time that the case has been set down for trial or otherwise brought before the court, as for example by notice of motion for an injunction; such matters may be referred to before such date unless it appears to the Chair that there is a real and substantial danger of prejudice to the trial of the case.
      (3) Paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Resolution should have effect-
 
 
    (a) in the case of a criminal case in courts of law, including courts martial, from the moment the law is set in motion by a charge being made;
 
    (b) in the case of a civil case in courts of law, from the time that the case has been set down for trial or otherwise brought before the court, as for example by notice of motion for an injunction;
 
    (c) in the case of any judicial body to which the House has expressly referred a specific matter for decision and report, from the time when the Resolution of the House is passed.
      (4) Paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Resolution should cease to have effect-
 
 
    (a) in the case of courts of law, when the verdict and sentence have been announced or judgment given, but resumed when notice of appeal is given until the appeal has been decided;
 
    (b) in the case of courts martial, when the sentence of the court has been confirmed and promulgated, but resumed when the convicted man petitions the Army Council, the Air Council or the Board of Admiralty;
 
    (c) in the case of any judicial body to which the House has expressly referred a specific matter for decision and report, as soon as the report is laid before the House.
Resolution of 28 June 1972      Resolved, That-
 
      (1) notwithstanding the Resolution of 23 July 1963 and subject to the discretion of the Chair reference may be made in Questions, Motions or debate to matters awaiting or under adjudication in all civil courts, including the National Industrial Relations Court, in so far as such matters relate to a Ministerial decision which cannot be challenged in court except on grounds of misdirection or bad faith, or concern issues of national importance such as the national economy, public order or the essentials of life;
 
      (2) in exercising its discretion the Chair should not allow reference to such matters if it appears that there is a real and substantial danger of prejudice to the proceedings; and should have regard to the considerations set out in paragraphs 25 to 28 of the Fourth Report from the Select Committee on Procedure.
 
  SCRUTINY OF EUROPEAN BUSINESS
Resolution of 17th November 1998, as in effect following the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam      Resolved, That the Resolution of the House of 24th October 1990 relating to European Community Legislation be rescinded and the following Resolution be made:
 
      That,
 
      (1) No Minister of the Crown should give agreement in the Council or in the European Council to any proposal for European Community legislation or for a common common strategy, joint action or common position under Title V or a common position, framework decision, decision or convention under Title VI of the Treaty on European Union—
 
 
    (a) which is still subject to scrutiny (that is, on which the European Scrutiny Committee has not completed its scrutiny) or
 
    (b) which is awaiting consideration by the House (that is, which has been recommended by the European Scrutiny Committee for consideration pursuant to Standing Order No. 119 (European Standing Committees) but in respect of which the House has not come to a Resolution).
      (2) In this Resolution, any reference to agreement to a proposal includes—
 
 
    (a) agreement to a programme, plan or recommendation for European Community legislation;
 
    (b) political agreement;
 
    (c) in the case of a proposal on which the Council acts in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 251 of the Treaty of Rome (co-decision), agreement to a common position, to an act in the form of a common position incorporating amendments proposed by the European Parliament, and to a joint text; and
 
    (d) in the case of a proposal on which the Council acts in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 252 of the Treaty of Rome (co-operation), agreement to a common position.
      (3) The Minister concerned may, however, give agreement—
 
 
    (a) to a proposal which is still subject to scrutiny if he considers that it is confidential, routine or trivial or is substantially the same as a proposal on which scrutiny has been completed;
 
    (b) to a proposal which is awaiting consideration by the House if the European Scrutiny Committee has indicated that agreement need not be withheld pending consideration.
      (4) The Minister concerned may also give agreement to a proposal which is still subject to scrutiny or awaiting consideration by the House if he decides that for special reasons agreement should be given; but he should explain his reasons—
 
 
    (a) in every such case, to the European Scrutiny Committee at the first opportunity after reaching his decision; and
 
    (b) in the case of a proposal awaiting consideration by the House, to the House at the first opportunity after giving agreement.
      (5) In relation to any proposal which requires adoption by unanimity, abstention shall, for the purposes of paragraph (4), be treated as giving agreement.
 
  QUESTIONS TO MINISTERS
Resolution of 25th October 1999      Resolved, That, subject always to the discretion of the Chair, and in addition to the established rules of order on the form and content of questions, questions may not be tabled on matters for which responsibility has been devolved by legislation to the Scottish Parliament or the National Assembly for Wales unless the question:
      (a) seeks information which the United Kingdom Government is empowered to require of the devolved executive, or

      (b) relates to matters which:

          (i) are included in legislative proposals introduced or to be introduced in the United Kingdom Parliament,

          (ii) are concerned with the operation of a concordat or other instrument of liaison between the United Kingdom Government and the devolved executive, or

          (iii) United Kingdom Government ministers have taken an official interest in, or

      (c) presses for action by United Kingdom ministers in areas in which they retain administrative powers.


 
 
  
  SESSIONAL ORDERS
  
  Programming (7th November 2000)
      
    Ordered, That in the next Session of Parliament Orders A to I below shall have effect:

    A. Programme Motions

    (1) If, before second reading of a bill, notice of a motion providing for-

        (a) committal of the bill, and

        (b) an allocation of time to proceedings in committee on the bill;

    is given by a Minister of the Crown, the motion may be made immediately after second reading and Standing Order No. 63 (committal of bills) shall not apply to the bill.

    (2) Such a motion is to be called a programme motion.

    (3) An order made by the House as a result of a programme motion is to be called a programme order.

    (4) A motion to vary or supplement a programme order is also to be called a programme motion.

    (5) The question on a programme motion to vary or supplement a programme order shall be put forthwith unless paragraph (7) applies.

    (6) Otherwise, any question necessary to dispose of proceedings on a programme motion shall be put not later than three-quarters of an hour after the commencement of the proceedings.

    (7) This paragraph applies to a programme motion to-

        (a) reduce the amount of time allocated under a programme order for any proceedings on the bill (whether or not it also increases the amount of time allocated for other proceedings on the bill);

        (b) bring forward the date on which the bill is to be reported to the House in accordance with a programme order; or

        (c) add to the proceedings to which a programme order applies.

    (8) Standing Order No. 15(1) (exempted business) applies to proceedings on a programme motion.

    (9) Standing Order No. 83 (allocation of time) does not apply to a programme motion.

    (10) If a programme order applies to a bill, neither Standing Order No. 82 (Business Committee) nor Standing Order No. 120 (Business Sub-Committee) applies to the bill.

    B. Programming Committees

    (1) This order applies if a bill is subject to a programme order which makes provision for proceedings in committee of the whole House or on consideration and third reading.

    (2) There is to be a committee for the bill consisting of-

        (a) the Chairman of Ways and Means (who is to be chairman of the committee); and

        (b) not more than eight other Members, nominated by the Speaker.

    (3) The committee is to be called the Programming Committee.

    (4) The quorum of the Programming Committee is four.

    (5) The Programming Committee shall-

        (a) consider the allocation of periods of time to such of the proceedings in committee of the whole House (or on consideration and third reading) as it thinks appropriate to designate; and

        (b) report any resolution which it makes to the House.

    (6) On a motion being made in the House in the terms of a resolution of the Programming Committee, any question necessary to dispose of proceedings on the motion shall be put not later than half an hour after the commencement of those proceedings.

    (7) If such a motion is agreed to, its provisions shall have effect as if they were included in the programme order for the bill.

    (8) Proceedings on a motion made under paragraph (6) may be entered upon and decided, though opposed, at any hour.

    (9) Resolutions of the Programming Committee-

        (a) may be reported from time to time; and

        (b) subject to the powers of the Speaker or Chairman to select the amendments, new clauses and new schedules to be proposed, may include alterations in the order in which designated proceedings on the bill are to be taken.

    C. Programming Sub-Committees

    (1) If a bill is subject to a programme order which commits it to a standing committee, the order stands referred to the committee and shall be considered by a sub-committee of the committee.

    (2) The sub-committee is to be called the Programming Sub-Committee.

    (3) The Programming Sub-Committee shall consist of-

        (a) the chairman or one of the chairmen of the committee (who is to be chairman of the sub-committee); and

        (b) seven members of the committee, nominated by the Speaker.

    (4) The quorum of the Programming Sub-Committee is four.

    (5) The Programming Sub-Committee shall report to the committee any resolution which it makes about-

        (a) the number of sittings to be allotted to the consideration of the bill in the committee;

        (b) the allocation of the proceedings to each sitting;

        (c) the time at which any proceedings, if not previously concluded, are to be brought to a conclusion.

    (6) On a motion being made in the committee in the terms of a resolution of the Programming Sub-Committee, any question necessary to dispose of proceedings on the motion shall be put not later than half an hour after the commencement of those proceedings.

    (7) If such a motion is agreed to, its provisions shall have effect as if they were included in the programme order for the bill.

    (8) Resolutions of the Programming Sub-Committee-

        (a) may be reported from time to time; and

        (b) subject to the powers of the chairman to select the amendments, new clauses and new schedules to be proposed, may include alterations in the order in which specified proceedings are to be taken.

    D. Programme orders: conclusion of proceedings in Standing Committee or in Committee of the whole House

    (1) This order applies for the purpose of bringing proceedings in standing committee or in committee of the whole House to a conclusion in accordance with a programme order.

    (2) The chairman shall put forthwith the following questions (but no others)-

        (a) any question already proposed from the chair;

        (b) any question necessary to bring to a decision a question so proposed;

        (c) the question on any amendment, new clause or new schedule selected by the chairman for separate division;

        (d) the question on any amendment moved or motion made by a Minister of the Crown;

        (e) any other question necessary for the disposal of the business to be concluded.

    (3) On a motion made for a new clause or a new schedule, the chairman shall put only the question that the clause or schedule be added to the bill.

    (4) If two or more questions would fall to be put under paragraph (2)(d) on successive amendments moved or motions made by a Minister of the Crown, the chairman shall instead put a single question in relation to those amendments or motions.

    (5) If two or more questions would fall to be put under paragraph (2)(e) in relation to successive provisions of the bill, the chairman shall instead put a single question in relation to those provisions.

    (6) On conclusion of the proceedings in a committee, the chairman shall report the bill (or such of the bill's provisions as were committed to it) to the House without putting any question.

    E. Programme orders: conclusion of proceedings on consideration or third reading.

    (1) This order applies for the purpose of bringing proceedings on consideration and third reading to a conclusion in accordance with a programme order.

    (2) The Speaker shall put forthwith the following questions (but no others)-

        (a) any question already proposed from the chair;

        (b) any question necessary to bring to a decision a question so proposed;

        (c) the question on any amendment, new clause or new schedule selected by the Speaker for separate division;

        (d) the question on any amendment moved or motion made by a Minister of the Crown;

        (e) any other question necessary for the disposal of the business to be concluded.

    (3) On a motion made for a new clause or a new schedule, the Speaker shall put only the question that the clause or schedule be added to the bill.

    (4) If two or more questions would fall to be put under paragraph (2)(d) on successive amendments moved or motions made by a Minister of the Crown, the Speaker shall instead put a single question in relation to those amendments or motions.

    F. Programme orders: conclusion of proceedings on consideration of Lords Amendments

    (1) This order applies for the purpose of bringing proceedings on consideration of Lords Amendments to a conclusion in accordance with a programme order.

    (2) The Speaker shall first put forthwith any question which has been proposed from the chair and not yet decided.

    (3) If that question is for the amendment of a Lords Amendment, the Speaker shall then put forthwith-

        (a) a single question on any further amendments of the Lords Amendment moved by a Minister of the Crown; and

        (b) the question on any motion made by a Minister of the Crown that this House agrees or disagrees with the Lords in their Amendment or (as the case may be) in their Amendment as amended.

    (4) The Speaker shall then put forthwith-

        (a) a single question on any amendments moved by a Minister of the Crown to a Lords Amendment; and

        (b) the question on any motion made by a Minister of the Crown that this House agrees or disagrees with the Lords in their Amendment or (as the case may be) in their Amendment as amended.

    (5) The Speaker shall then put forthwith the question on any motion made by a Minister of the Crown that this House disagrees with the Lords in a Lords Amendment.

    (6) The Speaker shall then put forthwith the question that this House agrees with the Lords in all the remaining Lords Amendments.

    (7) As soon as the House has-

        (a) agreed or disagreed with the Lords in any of their Amendments, or

        (b) disposed of an amendment relevant to a Lords Amendment which has been disagreed to,

    the Speaker shall put forthwith a single question on any amendments moved by a Minister of the Crown relevant to the Lords Amendment.

    G. Programme orders: conclusion of proceedings on further messages from the Lords

    (1) This order applies for the purpose of bringing proceedings on any further message from the Lords to a conclusion in accordance with a programme order.

    (2) The Speaker shall first put forthwith any question which has been proposed from the chair and not yet decided.

    (3) The Speaker shall then put forthwith the question on any motion made by a Minister of the Crown which is related to the question already proposed from the chair.

    (4) The Speaker shall then put forthwith the question on any motion made by a Minister on or relevant to any of the remaining items in the Lords message.

    (5) The Speaker shall then put forthwith the question that this House agrees with the Lords in all the remaining Lords proposals.

    H. Programme orders: Reasons Committee

    (1) This order applies in relation to any Committee to be appointed to draw up Reasons after proceedings have been brought to a conclusion in accordance with a programme order.

    (2) The Speaker shall put forthwith the question on any motion made by a Minister of the Crown for the appointment, nomination and quorum of a Committee to draw up Reasons and the appointment of its chairman.

    (3) The Committee shall report before the conclusion of the sitting at which it is appointed.

    (4) Proceedings in the Committee shall be brought to a conclusion not later than half an hour after their commencement.

    (5) For the purpose of bringing any proceedings to a conclusion in accordance with paragraph (4), the chairman shall-

        (a) first put forthwith any question which has been proposed from the chair and not yet decided; and

        (b) then put forthwith successively questions on motions which may be made by a Minister of the Crown for assigning a Reason for disagreeing with the Lords in any of their Amendments.

    (6) The proceedings of the Committee shall be reported without any further question being put.

    I. Programme orders: supplementary provisions

    (1) The provisions of this order apply to proceedings in the House or in Committee of the whole House on a bill which is subject to a programme order.

    (2) Standing Order No. 15(1) (Exempted business) applies to the proceedings for any period after Ten o'clock (or on Thursday, Seven o'clock) allocated to them in accordance with the programme order.

    (3) The proceedings may not be interrupted under any Standing Order relating to the sittings of the House.

    (4) If, on a day on which the bill has been set down to be taken as an order of the day, a motion for the adjournment of the House under Standing Order No. 24 (Adjournment on specific and important matter that should have urgent consideration) would, apart from this order, stand over to Seven o'clock-

        (a) that motion stands over until the conclusion of any proceedings on the bill which, in accordance with the programme order, are to be brought to conclusion at or before that time; and

        (b) the bringing to a conclusion of any proceedings on the bill which, in accordance with the programme order, are to be brought to a conclusion after that time is postponed for a period of time equal to the duration of the proceedings on that motion.

    (5) If a day on which the bill has been set down to be taken as an order of the day is one to which a motion for the adjournment of the House under Standing Order No. 24 stands over from an earlier day, the bringing to a conclusion of any proceedings on the bill which, in accordance with the programme order, are to be brought to a conclusion on that day is postponed for a period equal to the duration of the proceedings on that motion.

    (6) No dilatory motion may be made in relation to the proceedings except by a Minister of the Crown; and the question on any such motion is to be put forthwith.

    (7) If at any sitting the House is adjourned, or the sitting is suspended, before the expiry of the period at the end of which proceedings are to be brought to a conclusion under a programme order, no notice is required of a motion made at the next sitting by a Minister of the Crown for varying or supplementing the provisions of the programme order.

  Deferred divisions (7th November 2000)
      
    Ordered, That in the next Session of Parliament the following Order shall have effect:

    (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), Standing Order No. 38 (Procedure on divisions) shall not apply if, after the time for the interruption of business, the opinion of the Speaker as to the decision on a question is challenged in respect of any question.

    (2) Standing Order No. 38 (Procedure on divisions) shall apply (and this order shall not apply) to questions-

        (a) on motions or amendments in the course of proceedings on bills or allocating time to or programming such proceedings;

        (b) on motions which may be made without notice;

        (c) on motions to be disposed of immediately following the disposal of amendments proposed thereto, and on such amendments;

        (d) on motions made under-

          (i) paragraph (2) of Standing Order No. 15 (Exempted business);

          (ii) paragraph (3) of Standing Order No. 51 (Ways and means motions);

          (iii) sub-paragraph (1)(a) of Standing Order No. 52 (Money resolutions and ways and means resolutions in connection with bills);

          (iv) paragraph (5) of Standing Order No. 54 (Consideration of estimates); and

          (v) paragraph (1) of Standing Order No. 55 (Questions on voting of estimates, &c.); and

        (e) on motions made under paragraph (3) below or to which an order made under that paragraph applies.

    (3) After the moment of interruption and the conclusion of proceedings under any other Standing Order which fall to be taken immediately after it, a Minister of the Crown may make a motion to the effect that this order shall not apply to questions on any specified motions; such motion may be proceeded with, though opposed, and the question thereon shall be put forthwith.

    (4) If the opinion of the Speaker is challenged under paragraph (1) of this order, he shall defer the division until half-past Three o'clock on the next Wednesday on which the House shall sit.

    (5) On any Wednesday to which a division has been deferred under paragraph (4) above-

        (a) Members may record their votes on the question under arrangements made by the Speaker;

        (b) votes may be recorded for one and a half hours after half-past Three o'clock, no account being taken of any period during which the House or committee proceeds to a division; and

        (c) the Speaker, or the Chairman, shall announce the result of the deferred divisions as soon as may be after the expiry of the period mentioned in sub-paragraph (b) above.

  Thursday sittings and meetings of standing committees (20th November 2000)
      Ordered, That, from the next session of Parliament until the end of the first Session of the next Parliament, the Standing Orders and practice of the House shall have effect subject to the modifications set out below:
 
      A. (1) The House shall meet on Thursdays at half-past Eleven o'clock, and will first proceed with private business, motions for unopposed returns and questions;
 
      (2) proceedings on business on Thursdays shall be interrupted at Seven o'clock; and
 
      (3) in their application to Thursday sittings of the House, reference to a specified time in the Standing Orders shall be interpreted as reference to a time three hours before the time so specified, save that reference to half-past Ten o'clock shall be substituted for reference to Twelve o'clock in Standing Order No. 24 (Adjournment on a specific and important matter that should have urgent consideration).
 
      B. Standing committees shall have leave to sit at any hour and notwithstanding any adjournment of the House, subject to the following provisions:
      
      (a) on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays when the House is sitting, no standing committee sitting at Westminster shall sit between the hours of One o’clock and half-past Three o’clock, except as provided in paragraph (2) of Standing Order No. 88 (Meetings of standing committees); and
      
      (b) on Thursdays when the House is sitting, no standing committee sitting at Westminster shall sit between the hours of twenty-five minutes past Eleven o’clock and half-past Twelve o’clock, except as provided in paragraph (2) of Standing Order No. 88 (Meetings of standing committees), with the substitution in that paragraph of ‘twenty-five minutes past Eleven o’clock' for ‘One o’clock' and ‘twenty minutes to Twelve o’clock' for ‘a quarter past One o’clock'.
  Sittings in Westminster Hall (20th November 2000)
      Ordered, That, from the next Session of Parliament until the end of the first Session of the next Parliament, the Standing Orders and practice of the House shall have effect subject to the modifications set out below:

(1) On days on which the House shall sit after an address has been agreed to in answer to Her Majesty's Speech there shall be a sitting in Westminster Hall-

      (a) on Tuesdays and Wednesdays between half-past Nine o'clock and Two o'clock; and

      (b) on Thursdays beginning at half-past Two o'clock and continuing for up to three hours (and in calculating that period no account shall be taken of any period during which the sitting may be suspended owing to a division being called in the House or a committee of the whole House).

(2) Any member of the House may take part in a sitting in Westminster Hall.

(3) Subject to paragraph (13) below, the business taken at any sitting in Westminster Hall shall be such as the Chairman of Ways and Means shall appoint.

(4) The Chairman of Ways and Means or a Deputy Chairman shall take the chair in Westminster Hall as Deputy Speaker; and the House may appoint not more than four other members of the Chairmen's Panel to sit in Westminster Hall as a Deputy Speaker.

(5) Any member of the Chairmen's Panel may also take the chair at a sitting in Westminster Hall when so requested by the Chairman of Ways and Means, with the duties and powers conferred on additional Deputy Speakers; and Members so appointed shall be addressed by name.

(6) Any order made or resolution come to at a sitting in Westminster Hall (other than a resolution to adjourn) shall be reported to the House by the Deputy Speaker and shall be deemed to be an order or resolution of the House.

(7) If a motion be made by a Minister of the Crown that an order of the day be proceeded with at a sitting in Westminster Hall, the question thereon shall be put forthwith, but such motion may be made only with the leave of the House and may not be made on a Friday.

(8) The quorum at a sitting in Westminster Hall shall be three.

(9) If at a sitting in Westminster Hall the opinion of the Deputy Speaker as to the decision of a question (other than a question for adjournment) is challenged, that question shall not be decided, and the Deputy Speaker shall report to the House accordingly; and any such question shall be put forthwith upon a motion being made in the House.

(10) If any business other than a motion for adjournment is under consideration at a sitting in Westminster Hall, and not fewer than six Members rise in their places and signify their objection to further proceedings, that business shall not be further proceeded with in Westminster Hall, and the Deputy Speaker shall report to the House accordingly, and any order under paragraph (7) above relating thereto shall be discharged.

(11) At the end of each sitting in Westminster Hall, unless a question for adjournment has previously been agreed to, the Deputy Speaker shall adjourn the sitting without putting any question; and proceedings on any business which has been entered upon but not disposed of shall lapse.

(12) The provisions of Standing Orders No. 29 (Powers of chair to propose question), No. 36 (Closure of debate), No. 37 (Majority for closure or proposal of question), No. 38 (Procedure on divisions), No. 39 (Voting), No. 40 (Division unnecessarily claimed), No. 41 (Quorum), No. 43 (Disorderly conduct), No. 44 (Order in debate), No. 45 (Members suspended, &c. to withdraw from precincts), No. 45A (Suspension of salary of Members suspended) and No. 163 (Motions to sit in private) shall not apply to sittings in Westminster Hall.

(13) In each Session, the Speaker shall appoint not more than six Thursdays on which the business to be taken in Westminster Hall should be debates on select committee reports chosen by the Liaison Committee.

(14) The House shall meet on Wednesdays at half-past Two o'clock, and paragraphs (1) and (2) of Standing Order No. 9 (Sittings of the House) shall have effect on Wednesdays; and Standing Order No. 10 shall not have effect.

 
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