The House met at half-past Two o'clock.
1 First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation,-Mr Alan Hurst reported from the First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation the draft Functions of Traffic Wardens (Amendment) Order 2002.
Minutes of Proceedings of the Committee to lie upon the Table.
2 Communications Bill,-Secretary Tessa Jowell, supported by The Prime Minister, Mr Secretary Prescott, Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, Mr Secretary Straw, Mr Secretary Blunkett, Mr Secretary Murphy, Mrs Secretary Liddell, Ms Secretary Hewitt, Secretary Peter Hain, Mr Stephen Timms and Dr Kim Howells, presented a Bill to confer functions on the Office of Communications; to make provision about the regulation of the provision of electronic communications networks and services and of the use of the electro-magnetic spectrum; to make provision about the regulation of broadcasting and of the provision of television and radio services; to make provision about newspaper mergers and, in that connection, to amend the Enterprise Act 2002; and for connected purposes: And the same was read the first time; and ordered to be read a second time to-morrow and to be printed [Bill 6].
Ordered, That the Explanatory Notes relating to the Communications Bill be printed [Bill 6-EN].
3 Queen's Speech (Motion for an Address),-The Order of the Day being read, for resuming the adjourned Debate on the Question proposed on 13th November, That an humble Address be presented to Her Majesty, as follows:
We, Your Majesty's dutiful and loyal subjects, the Commons of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, in Parliament assembled, beg leave to offer our humble thanks to Your Majesty for the Gracious Speech which Your Majesty has addressed to both Houses of Parliament;
And the Question being again proposed:-The House resumed the adjourned Debate.
An Amendment was proposed to the Question, at the end, to add the words 'but humbly regret the absence of a Bill to ensure the impartiality of the Civil Service; and further regret the centralising nature of measures on regional and local government, housing and planning; note the absence of measures to end insecurity in old age with no Bill to abolish the annuity rule or tackle the crisis in the pension system; further regret that the Gracious Speech contains no measures to deliver a health service in which no patient is left waiting, but seeks unfairly to charge local authorities for bed-blocking in hospitals, and to grant foundation status only to a small number of hospitals; are concerned at the failure to reduce the burden of regulation on business and to tackle the crisis in the rural economy; welcome the Bill to create a Railway Accident Investigation Branch, along lines recommended by Her Majesty's Official Opposition, but condemn the failure to address the worsening transport crisis or to improve conditions for passengers, motorists and businesses; and further regret the failure to give more control over schools to parents and governors, to restore teacher morale, and to improve confidence in the examination system and universities.'.-(David Davis.)
And the Question being put, That the Amendment be made;
Tellers for the Ayes, Mrs Cheryl Gillan, Mr Mark Hoban: 150.
Tellers for the Noes, Mr Phil Woolas, Dan Norris: 330.
So the Question was negatived.
And it being after Ten o'clock, the Debate stood adjourned.
Ordered, That the Debate be resumed to-morrow.
4 Procedure,-Ordered, That Ms Meg Munn be discharged from the Procedure Committee and Mr Tony McWalter be added.-(Mr Nick Ainger.)
5 Public Petitions,-Public Petitions from-
(1) 'Consumers for Health Choice' and others against restrictions on the availability of natural health products,
(2) Sandra Edwards and supporters of 'Voice 4 Dogs' for legislation to ban the import and export of products made from dog and cat fur,
(3) the British Pensioners and Trade Union Action Association, Coventry Branch, for a free national travel pass scheme for pensioners in England
(4) the British Pensioners and Trade Union Action Association, Coventry Branch, for increased state retirement pensions, and
were presented and read; and ordered to lie upon the Table and to be printed.
6 Adjournment,-Resolved, That this House do now adjourn.-(Mr Nick Ainger.)
And accordingly the House, having continued to sit till a quarter to Eleven o'clock, adjourned till to-morrow.
[Adjourned at 10.45 p.m.
Michael J. Martin
Mr Speaker will take the Chair at half-past Two o'clock.
Papers presented or laid upon the Table:
Papers subject to Negative Resolution:
1 Education,-Special Educational Needs Tribunal (Amendment) Regulations 2002 (S.I., 2002, No. 2787), dated 11th November [by Act] [Mr Secretary Clarke].
2 National Health Service,-National Health Service (Local Pharmaceutical Services Etc.) Regulations 2002 (S.I., 2002, No. 2861), dated 19th November [by Act] [Mr Secretary Milburn].
3 Defence Executive Agencies,-Report and Accounts of the British Forces Post Office for 2001-02, with the Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General thereon [by Act]; to be printed [No. 7] [Mr Secretary Hoon].
4 Miscellaneous (No. 19, 2002),-Protocol of Amendment to the International Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures, done at Brussels on 26th June 1999, with an Explanatory Memorandum [by Command] [Cm. 5680] [Mr Secretary Straw].
5 National Audit,-Report by the Comptroller and Auditor General on the Invest to Save Budget [by Act]; to be printed [No. 50] [Clerk of the House].
6 National Lottery,-Report and Accounts and Corporate Plan Summary of the Sports Council for Wales for 2001-02, with the Report of the Auditor General for Wales thereon [by Act] [Secretary Peter Hain].
7 Naval and Marine Pay and Pensions,-(1) Naval and Marine Pay and Pensions (Non-Effective Benefits and Family Pensions) Order 2002, and
(2) Naval and Marine Pay and Pensions (Pensions Increase) Order 2002
dated 22nd October 2002 [by Act] [Mr Robin Cook].
8 Oil and Pipelines,-Report and Accounts of the Oil and Pipelines Agency for 2001-02 [by Act]; to be printed [No. 44] [Mr Secretary Hoon].
9 Private Business,-Rules for the Practice and Procedure of the Court of Referees, framed by the Chairman of Ways and Means [by Standing Order]; to be printed [No. 88] [Clerk of the House].
10 Sexual Offences,-Paper, entitled Protecting the Public: Strengthening protection against sex offenders and reforming the law on sexual offences [by Command] [Cm. 5668] [Mr Secretary Blunkett].
1 Draft Functions of Traffic Wardens (Amendment) Order 2002,-The Committee of Selection has discharged Geraint Davies from the First Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the draft Order); and nominated in substitution Phil Sawford.
2 Draft Contracting Out (Functions in Relation to Applications for Patents) Order 2002,-The Committee of Selection has discharged Ms Oona King from the Sixth Standing Committee on Delegated Legislation (nominated in respect of the draft Order); and nominated in substitution Mr Andrew Miller.
Reports from Select Committees
1 Culture, Media and Sport,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Culture, Media and Sport Committee [Tourism]; to be printed [No. 65-i] [Mr Gerald Kaufman].
2 Home Affairs,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the Home Affairs Committee [Criminal Justice and Sentencing Bill]; to be printed [No. 83-i] [Mr Chris Mullin].
3 International Development,-Minutes of Evidence taken before the International Development Committee [Afghanistan: the transition from humanitarian relief to reconstruction and development assistance]; to be printed [No. 84-i] [Tony Baldry].
4 Statutory Instruments,-First Report from the Joint Committee on Statutory Instruments, together with Memoranda laid before the Committee; to be printed [No. 96-i] [Mr Brian White].
5 Trade and Industry,-(1) First Report form the Trade and Industry Committee [Managing the Nuclear Legacy: Responses to the Committee's Fifth Report of Session 2001-02]; to be printed, with the Minutes of Proceedings of the Committee relating to the Report [No. 86]; and
(2) Minutes of Evidence taken before the Committee [Biotechnology]; to be printed [No. 87-i]
6 Regulatory Reform,-First Report from the Regulatory Reform Committee [Proposal for the Regulatory Reform (Credit Unions) Order 2002; Proposal for the Regulatory Reform (Special Occasions Licensing) Order 2002]; to be printed, with the Minutes of Proceedings of the Committee relating to the Report [No. 82] [Mr Peter Pike].
7 Welsh Affairs,-First Report from the Welsh Affairs Committee [Broadband in Wales], together with Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence taken before the Committee; to be printed, with the Minutes of Proceedings of the Committee relating to the Report [No. 95] [Mr Martyn Jones].