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Mr. Peter Luff (Mid-Worcestershire): On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, of which I have given you notice. You will, of course, be aware of the provisions of the resolution of the House made in the 199697 Session, which, among other things, states:
In fact, contrary to what you said in the debate, there were only some 500 people working on the airfield and only a dozen or so of them lived there overnight because of the unsuitability of the area for residential accommodation.
Most of the people who worked at the airfield lived on the Abbey Estate in Pershore, which was built specifically to accommodate RAF airfield personnel and was transferred to the local council for housing after the RAF left the airfield in 1976."
Angela Eagle (Wallasey): Further to that point of order, Mr. Speaker. It is obviously a matter of great regret to me that one of the last things that I said from the Front Bench was inaccurate, as the hon. Gentleman says, and I apologise to the House for that. At the end of the Adjournment debate, when I stated what I thought was a fact, the looks of astonishment on the faces around me gave me some clue that I might not be on safe ground. I subsequently had my office researchers begin to check whether my statement was accurate, but unfortunately an event that I had not anticipated supervened to prevent me from putting the record straight from the Front Bench. I am glad that the hon. Gentleman has been able to do so, and I pass on my regrets to the House for misleading it.
Mr. Tam Dalyell (Linlithgow): On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. I recall that there was a time, perhaps long ago, when, whichever party was in power, there was a customnot a rule, but a customregarding Members asking written questions. If there was any difficulty about answering them, and the civil servants had to puzzle out why they were being asked, the Member concerned would ring the Minister's private office to explain the background. That saved a great deal of civil service time and led to better answers.
Mr. David Wilshire (Spelthorne): On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. I want to return to your earlier ruling in response to my right hon. Friend the shadow Leader of the House that it is not a matter for the Chair that the Government keep secret records on Members of Parliament. If it is not a matter for the Chair, what advice can you give to Members about how they can get access to that secret information that the Government keep on us and are using against us?
Consideration and Third Reading
(1) Paragraphs (5) to (7) of the Order of 24th April shall be omitted.
(2) Proceedings on consideration and Third Reading shall be concluded in two days.
(3) The proceedings on consideration shall be taken on each of the days as shown in the first column in the following Table and shall be taken in the order shown and each part of the proceedings shall (so far as not previously concluded) be brought to a conclusion at the time specified in the second column.
|Proceedings||Time for conclusion of proceedings|
|New Clauses and new Schedules relating to accommodation centres; amendments relating to Clauses 14 to 36.||7.00 p.m.|
|New Clauses and new Schedules relating to appeals; amendments relating to Clause 65, Schedule 3, Clauses 66 to 84, Schedule 4, Clauses 85 to 96 and Schedules 5 and 6.||10.00 p.m.|
|Remaining new Clauses and new Schedules; amendments relating to Clauses 1 and 2, Schedule 1, Clauses 3 to 13, Schedule 2 and Clauses 37 to 64.||7.00 p.m.|
|Amendments relating to Clauses 97 to 132, Schedule 7 and Clauses 133 to 135; remaining proceedings.||9.00 p.m.|
(5) Sessional Order B (programming committees) made on 28th June 2001 shall not apply to proceedings on consideration and Third Reading.
We have a two-day debate before us and I hope that we shall take as little time as possible over the programme motion so that we can debate the issues that the timetable tackles. I hope that I can help to achieve that by setting an example. I want to draw some matters to the attention of those who are not familiar with what happened to the timings for this important and complicated measure.
On Second Reading, the Opposition appealed for extra time in Committee, and I said that I was willing to consider the matter with the Whips. I did that, and because of representations from Opposition Members in Committee that deferred three sessions of the 32 and a half hours allocated for our proceedings, we agreed that there should be an extra day. That was welcomed by hon. Members of all parties. Indeed, the hon. Member for Chesham and Amersham (Mrs. Gillan) said:
On Second Reading, my hon. Friend the Member for Wallasey said in her summing up that we would table further amendments to deal with what is known as benefit shopping and the outcome of the Roth judgment. Everyone knew that further amendments had to be considered in the light of that. Two weeks ago, I said that there would be a further substantive amendment on the appeals process. Today, I am moving a programme motion that provides, not for the original one day that was allocated for Report and Third Reading, but for the two days that I personally requested so that the additional amendments could be properly scrutinised.
With the additional day in Committee, the two extra days for Report and Third Reading are proper and adequate. The timetable motion shares the time available between consideration of accommodation centres and of appeals in a way that enables hon. Members to have their voices heard and their anxieties raised and considered.