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Orders Of The Day

Volume 301: debated on Monday 24 November 1997

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Greater London Authority(Referendum) Bill

4.18 pm

On a point of order, Madam Speaker. Today is the second day of the Bill's Committee stage, as you—

Order. If this is a point of order on the Committee stage, it is a matter for the Chairman of Ways and Means.

It deals with the Bill's Report stage and Third Reading.

Today is the Bill's Committee stage. At last Thursday's business questions, the Leader of the House, in the conventional way, announced this week's business. She said that, this Wednesday, the Bill would have its Third Reading. No provision has been made for a Report stage. No one can know—not even the Government, in their arrogance, can presume—that no amendments will be agreed in Committee.

I therefore ask you, Madam Speaker, to make it absolutely clear that the House is entirely free to amend the Bill in Committee; that, if it is amended, there will be a Report stage; that time will have to be found for the Report stage; and that time will have be found to table amendments between the end of the Committee stage and the Report stage.

The hon. Gentleman is absolutely correct. Hon. Members must be given ample opportunity to table further amendments on Report, if we have a Report stage. That is the normal way to proceed, and it will be the way that we deal with this Bill.

Considered in Committee [Progress, 19 November.]