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Points of Order

Volume 451: debated on Monday 30 October 2006

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. You are aware that many of us are concerned about the length of time taken up by both questions and answers in Question Time and in statements. I am not referring to the statement that we have just heard, but rather to business questions last Thursday, and Defence questions earlier today. I know that you sympathise on that point, because you have said that you will make a statement about the length of interventions from Front-Bench Members and others. When will that statement be made?

I thank the right hon. and learned Gentleman for raising the matter with me. May I compliment the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs on the way in which he answered supplementary questions? It allowed me to call a great many Back Benchers, and it was a help. The older and more experienced Secretaries of State can learn from the young. I should say, too, that today’s Question Time was a case in point: I had to go beyond the rules of the House and take a further question at30 minutes past the hour, because I felt that the Ministers were taking too long in answering the supplementary questions. I hope that that will be borne in mind. On the right hon. and learned Gentleman’s main point, I hope to make my statement on Wednesday. I add that Back Benchers have a responsibility, too, and they should not ask more than one supplementary question. In the new Session, we can start afresh, and I will apply the rules that I shall set out in my statement. I hope that that helps the right hon. and learned Gentleman.

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pointed out that there had been administrative problems to do with the publication of hard copies of the Stern review, but this morning, I was at Millbank, and I could not help noticing that a large number of my journalist former colleagues had hard copies. Could someone gently suggest to the Treasury—I understand that it is responsible for the matter—that it should practise what it preaches when it comes to outsourcing, and that if it has difficulties printing such a document, it should get someone to trot down to Prontaprint on Victoria street and make the requisite number of copies?

I was here in the Chamber when the Secretary of State addressed the matter, and I think that we will leave it at that. The Secretary of State will deal with the issue that the hon. Gentleman raises.


Passenger Car (Fuel Consumption and Carbon Dioxide Emissions Information)

Colin Challen presented a Bill to introduce additional conditions on the display of information relating to passenger car carbon dioxide emissions in all promotional media relating to motor vehicles: And the same was read the First time; and ordered to be read a Second time on Friday 17 November, and to be printed [Bill 237].


Motion made, and Question put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 83A(6) (Programme motions),

That the following provisions shall apply to the Violent Crime Reduction Bill for the purpose of supplementing the Order of 20th June 2005 (Violent Crime Reduction Bill (Programme)):

Consideration of Lords Amendments

1. Proceedings on consideration of Lords Amendments shall (so far as not previously concluded) be brought to a conclusion three hours after their commencement at this day’s sitting.

2. The Lords Amendments shall be considered in the following order, namely: 27, 1 to 26 and 28 to 118.

Subsequent stages

3. Any further Message from the Lords may be considered forthwith without any Question being put.

4. The proceedings on any further Message from the Lords shall (so far as not previously concluded) be brought to a conclusion one hour after their commencement.—[Mr. McNulty.]

Question agreed to.