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Sir Norman Fowler: As for that radical new voting system, why is the hon. Gentleman proposing the closed-party-list system?

Mr. Raynsford: As the right hon. Gentleman should know by now, we are proposing exactly the same system as applies in Scotland and Wales--where people will have a direct choice of their own constituency candidate, for whom they will personally be able to vote. There will be a top-up vote for parties to ensure that there is a proper, proportionate election which is representative of those parties. It is a fair system. It is the system that will apply in Scotland and Wales, and it will apply also in London. Only the right hon. Gentleman--who is obsessed with the issue--seems to see any disadvantage in it.

Londoners will have a new role in ensuring direct, face-to-face accountability by participating with the mayor in the people's question time--which the hon. Member for Croydon, South had the gall to condemn and to try to ridicule. I hope that the people of London will take note of the contempt for democracy and for the people of London that he demonstrated.

Many hon. Members from both sides have spoken and intervened in this debate. The right hon. Member for Sutton Coldfield (Sir N. Fowler) not only made his rather curious foray into the issue of voting arrangements, but indicated the Conservative party's failure to reach a decision on the creation of the Metropolitan police authority. In his words, he had "suspended judgment"--I think that that means that he is sitting on the fence--on creation of the authority.

It is extraordinary that Conservative Members have taken so long to reach a view on the Metropolitan police authority. After all, it has been five years since the former Home Secretary, the right hon. and learned Member for Rushcliffe (Mr. Clarke), stated:

15 Dec 1998 : Column 817


    "I have also re-examined the role of the Home Secretary in relation to the Metropolitan police. I propose to establish for the first time a police authority for the Metropolitan police on the new national model separate from the Home Office and with essentially the same tasks as police authorities elsewhere."


    --[Official Report, 23 March 1993; Vol. 221, c. 766.]

He was right. Why on earth has the Conservative party taken so long to catch up with him? Perhaps it is uncomfortable for Conservative Members to be associated with the right hon. and learned Gentleman because of his views on Europe.

Sir Norman Fowler: In helping us, will the hon. Gentleman tell us whether he believes that, at the end of three years, there will be more or fewer police in the Metropolitan police?

Mr. Raynsford: As the right hon. Gentleman will know, in the arrangements that we are making, the Home Secretary will retain a reserve power to ensure that there will be an adequate budget to maintain an adequate and satisfactory level of policing.

Sir Norman Fowler: How many?

Mr. Raynsford: I cannot tell the right hon. Gentleman that--no one in my position can do so--as I am not responsible for that budget. However, I can give him the very clear indication--as the Home Secretary gave it earlier in the debate--that the Home Secretary is determined to ensure that the Metropolitan police force has the resources necessary to discharge its functions. That is what we shall ensure.

My hon. Friend the Member for Poplar and Canning Town (Mr. Fitzpatrick) asked a number of questions, the first of which was on east London river crossings. The Government have said that decisions on new crossings must wait for the new mayor. However, the Government will safeguard the alignments and ensure that preparatory work continues so that the mayor will be able quickly to reach a view. Meanwhile, English Partnerships is performing development work on the crossings.

My hon. Friend the Member for Poplar and Canning Town asked questions also about the Metropolitan police budget for their work in national functions. I assure him that, for 1999-2000, the police were allocated a special payment in recognition of their special capital city, national and international functions. The payment will be made as part of the central Government funding formula and will not be affected by creation of the new Greater London authority.

The right hon. Member for Cities of London and Westminster (Mr. Brooke), with his usual humour, expressed some distaste for the constitutional reform that the Government have begun. I hope that, in the years ahead, he will look back and regale his grandchildren and others in his usual humorous way with stories of the role that he played in the establishment of Britain's new constitutional arrangements, which secured a far better and more democratic society than the one that he knew initially.

The right hon. Member for Cities of London and Westminster asked also about planning powers. His rather relaxed view of whether tall buildings or very large office

15 Dec 1998 : Column 818

blocks should be subject to the mayor's scrutiny is not entirely in keeping with the views of many people in London, including some of his own constituents--to whom I was speaking at a meeting of the Knightsbridge Association--who have expressed concern about the scale of development. It is right that we have to strike a balance in the matter--which we are attempting to do--between legitimate concern for environmental protection and arrangements to enable business not only to prosper, but to thrive. We have consulted on the matter, and are considering the conclusions to be drawn from the consultation. We shall soon make announcements on it.

My hon. Friend the Member for Enfield, North (Ms Ryan), in a very effective speech, highlighted the importance of the economy and action by the new authority to improve London's economy. She stressed that the Bill was a step forward in the relationship between the Metropolitan police and the people of London.

The hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington (Mr. Brake) gave a welcome to the Metropolitan police authority. He asked questions about police funding to which I have already responded. He asked a series of questions on transport, not all of which I shall be able to answer now because of the shortage of time. Nevertheless, I shall stress to him two points.

First, the Government are quite determined to ensure that there is in place a satisfactory public-private partnership to guarantee adequate funding for the underground for the years ahead. It is the Government's responsibility to make those arrangements. The mayor, when elected, will be consulted on them, but it would be crazy to amend a bidding process and contractual arrangements when we are halfway through them. That would simply not be practical politics.

Secondly--as the hon. Member for Carshalton and Wallington asked about the composition of Transport for London--I stress that the body will be an executive that executes the strategy determined by the mayor, who will be the democratically accountable person.

My hon. Friend the Member for Mitcham and Morden (Siobhain McDonagh)--in a commendably brief speech, which was not necessarily her choice, but due to time constraints--gave warm support to the restoration of citywide government.

We have lived through a period in which London has lacked strategic government. We are bringing that period to an end. We are restoring a democratically elected citywide government to London--a new form of strategic citywide government--with the power to make a difference. We promised to put right the civic vandalism of 1986, and to restore democratic and accountable government to the capital. The Bill delivers on that promise. I warmly commend it to the House.

Question put, That the amendment be made:--

The House divided: Ayes 140, Noes 396.

Division No. 23
[7 pm


AYES


Ainsworth, Peter (E Surrey)
Amess, David
Ancram, Rt Hon Michael
Arbuthnot, Rt Hon James
Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)
Beggs, Roy
Bercow, John
Beresford, Sir Paul
Blunt, Crispin
Body, Sir Richard
Boswell, Tim
Bottomley, Peter (Worthing W)
Brady, Graham
Brazier, Julian
Brooke, Rt Hon Peter
Browning, Mrs Angela
Bruce, Ian (S Dorset)
Burns, Simon
Butterfill, John
Chapman, Sir Sydney
(Chipping Barnet)
Clappison, James
Clark, Rt Hon Alan (Kensington)
Clark, Dr Michael (Rayleigh)
Clarke, Rt Hon Kenneth
(Rushcliffe)
Clifton-Brown, Geoffrey
Collins, Tim
Colvin, Michael
Cormack, Sir Patrick
Cran, James
Curry, Rt Hon David
Davies, Quentin (Grantham)
Davis, Rt Hon David (Haltemprice)
Day, Stephen
Dorrell, Rt Hon Stephen
Duncan Smith, Iain
Evans, Nigel
Faber, David
Fallon, Michael
Forth, Rt Hon Eric
Fowler, Rt Hon Sir Norman
Fox, Dr Liam
Fraser, Christopher
Gale, Roger
Garnier, Edward
Gibb, Nick
Gill, Christopher
Gillan, Mrs Cheryl
Goodlad, Rt Hon Sir Alastair
Gorman, Mrs Teresa
Gray, James
Green, Damian
Greenway, John
Grieve, Dominic
Gummer, Rt Hon John
Hague, Rt Hon William
Hamilton, Rt Hon Sir Archie
Hammond, Philip
Hawkins, Nick
Hayes, John
Heald, Oliver
Heathcoat-Amory, Rt Hon David
Horam, John
Howard, Rt Hon Michael
Hunter, Andrew
Jack, Rt Hon Michael
Jackson, Robert (Wantage)
Jenkin, Bernard
Johnson Smith,
Rt Hon Sir Geoffrey
King, Rt Hon Tom (Bridgwater)
Kirkbride, Miss Julie
Laing, Mrs Eleanor
Lait, Mrs Jacqui
Lansley, Andrew
Letwin, Oliver
Lewis, Dr Julian (New Forest E)
Lidington, David
Lilley, Rt Hon Peter
Loughton, Tim
Luff, Peter
Lyell, Rt Hon Sir Nicholas
MacGregor, Rt Hon John
MacKay, Rt Hon Andrew
McLoughlin, Patrick
Malins, Humfrey
Maples, John
Maude, Rt Hon Francis
Mawhinney, Rt Hon Sir Brian
May, Mrs Theresa
Moss, Malcolm
Nicholls, Patrick
Norman, Archie
Ottaway, Richard
Page, Richard
Paice, James
Paterson, Owen
Pickles, Eric
Prior, David
Randall, John
Redwood, Rt Hon John
Robathan, Andrew
Robertson, Laurence (Tewk'b'ry)
Ross, William (E Lond'y)
Rowe, Andrew (Faversham)
Ruffley, David
St Aubyn, Nick
Sayeed, Jonathan
Shephard, Rt Hon Mrs Gillian
Shepherd, Richard
Simpson, Keith (Mid-Norfolk)
Smyth, Rev Martin (Belfast S)
Spicer, Sir Michael
Spring, Richard
Stanley, Rt Hon Sir John
Steen, Anthony
Streeter, Gary
Swayne, Desmond
Syms, Robert
Tapsell, Sir Peter
Taylor, Ian (Esher & Walton)
Taylor, John M (Solihull)
Taylor, Sir Teddy
Thompson, William
Townend, John
Tredinnick, David
Trend, Michael
Tyrie, Andrew
Viggers, Peter
Wardle, Charles
Waterson, Nigel
Wells, Bowen
Whitney, Sir Raymond
Whittingdale, John
Widdecombe, Rt Hon Miss Ann
Wilkinson, John
Willetts, David
Wilshire, David
Winterton, Mrs Ann (Congleton)
Winterton, Nicholas (Macclesfield)
Yeo, Tim
Young, Rt Hon Sir George

Tellers for the Ayes:


Mrs. Caroline Spelman and
Sir David Madel.


NOES


Abbott, Ms Diane
Adams, Mrs Irene (Paisley N)
Ainger, Nick
Ainsworth, Robert (Cov'try NE)
Alexander, Douglas
Allan, Richard
Anderson, Donald (Swansea E)
Armstrong, Ms Hilary
Ashton, Joe
Atherton, Ms Candy
Atkins, Charlotte
Austin, John
Baker, Norman
Ballard, Jackie
Banks, Tony
Barnes, Harry
Barron, Kevin
Battle, John
Bayley, Hugh
Beard, Nigel
Beckett, Rt Hon Mrs Margaret
Begg, Miss Anne
Beith, Rt Hon A J
Bell, Martin (Tatton)
Bell, Stuart (Middlesbrough)
Benn, Rt Hon Tony
Bennett, Andrew F
Benton, Joe
Bermingham, Gerald
Berry, Roger
Best, Harold
Betts, Clive
Blackman, Liz
Blears, Ms Hazel
Blizzard, Bob
Blunkett, Rt Hon David
Boateng, Paul
Borrow, David
Bradley, Keith (Withington)
Bradley, Peter (The Wrekin)
Bradshaw, Ben
Brake, Tom
Brand, Dr Peter
Breed, Colin
Brinton, Mrs Helen
Brown, Russell (Dumfries)
Browne, Desmond
Bruce, Malcolm (Gordon)
Buck, Ms Karen
Burden, Richard
Burgon, Colin
Burnett, John
Burstow, Paul
Butler, Mrs Christine
Byers, Rt Hon Stephen
Cable, Dr Vincent
Caborn, Richard
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth)
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge)
Campbell, Menzies (NE Fife)
Campbell, Ronnie (Blyth V)
Campbell-Savours, Dale
Cann, Jamie
Caplin, Ivor
Casale, Roger
Caton, Martin
Cawsey, Ian
Chapman, Ben (Wirral S)
Chidgey, David
Chisholm, Malcolm
Clapham, Michael
Clark, Rt Hon Dr David (S Shields)
Clark, Paul (Gillingham)
Clarke, Charles (Norwich S)
Clarke, Eric (Midlothian)
Clarke, Tony (Northampton S)
Clelland, David
Clwyd, Ann
Coaker, Vernon
Coffey, Ms Ann
Cohen, Harry
Coleman, Iain
Colman, Tony
Connarty, Michael
Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
Cooper, Yvette
Corbett, Robin
Corbyn, Jeremy
Corston, Ms Jean
Cotter, Brian
Cousins, Jim
Cox, Tom
Cranston, Ross
Crausby, David
Cryer, Mrs Ann (Keighley)
Cummings, John
Cunliffe, Lawrence
Cunningham, Jim (Cov'try S)
Cunningham, Ms Roseanna
(Perth)
Curtis-Thomas, Mrs Claire
Darvill, Keith
Davey, Edward (Kingston)
Davey, Valerie (Bristol W)
Davidson, Ian
Davies, Rt Hon Denzil (Llanelli)
Davies, Geraint (Croydon C)
Dawson, Hilton
Dean, Mrs Janet
Denham, John
Dismore, Andrew
Dobbin, Jim
Dobson, Rt Hon Frank
Donohoe, Brian H
Doran, Frank
Dowd, Jim
Drew, David
Drown, Ms Julia
Dunwoody, Mrs Gwyneth
Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Eagle, Maria (L'pool Garston)
Edwards, Huw
Ellman, Mrs Louise
Ennis, Jeff
Etherington, Bill
Ewing, Mrs Margaret
Fearn, Ronnie
Field, Rt Hon Frank
Fisher, Mark
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Flint, Caroline
Flynn, Paul
Foster, Rt Hon Derek
Foster, Don (Bath)
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings)
Foster, Michael J (Worcester)
Foulkes, George
Fyfe, Maria
Galloway, George
Gapes, Mike
George, Andrew (St Ives)
Gerrard, Neil
Gibson, Dr Ian
Gilroy, Mrs Linda
Godman, Dr Norman A
Godsiff, Roger
Goggins, Paul
Golding, Mrs Llin
Gordon, Mrs Eileen
Gorrie, Donald
Griffiths, Jane (Reading E)
Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)
Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Grocott, Bruce
Grogan, John
Gunnell, John
Hain, Peter
Hall, Mike (Weaver Vale)
Hall, Patrick (Bedford)
Hamilton, Fabian (Leeds NE)
Hancock, Mike
Harman, Rt Hon Ms Harriet
Harris, Dr Evan
Harvey, Nick
Heal, Mrs Sylvia
Healey, John
Heath, David (Somerton & Frome)
Henderson, Ivan (Harwich)
Heppell, John
Hesford, Stephen
Hinchliffe, David
Hodge, Ms Margaret
Hoey, Kate
Home Robertson, John
Hood, Jimmy
Hoon, Geoffrey
Hope, Phil
Hopkins, Kelvin
Howarth, Alan (Newport E)
Howarth, George (Knowsley N)
Howells, Dr Kim
Hughes, Ms Beverley (Stretford)
Hughes, Simon (Southwark N)
Humble, Mrs Joan
Hurst, Alan
Hutton, John
Iddon, Dr Brian
Illsley, Eric
Jackson, Ms Glenda (Hampstead)
Jackson, Helen (Hillsborough)
Jamieson, David
Jenkins, Brian
Johnson, Alan (Hull W & Hessle)
Johnson, Miss Melanie
(Welwyn Hatfield)
Jones, Helen (Warrington N)
Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)
Jones, Dr Lynne (Selly Oak)
Jones, Martyn (Clwyd S)
Jowell, Ms Tessa
Kaufman, Rt Hon Gerald
Keeble, Ms Sally
Keen, Alan (Feltham & Heston)
Keen, Ann (Brentford & Isleworth)
Kelly, Ms Ruth
Kemp, Fraser
Kennedy, Charles (Ross Skye)
Kennedy, Jane (Wavertree)
Khabra, Piara S
Kidney, David
Kilfoyle, Peter
King, Andy (Rugby & Kenilworth)
King, Ms Oona (Bethnal Green)
Kingham, Ms Tess
Kirkwood, Archy
Kumar, Dr Ashok
Ladyman, Dr Stephen
Lawrence, Ms Jackie
Laxton, Bob
Lepper, David
Leslie, Christopher
Levitt, Tom
Lewis, Ivan (Bury S)
Lewis, Terry (Worsley)
Linton, Martin
Livingstone, Ken
Livsey, Richard
Llwyd, Elfyn
Lock, David
Love, Andrew
McAllion, John
McAvoy, Thomas
McCabe, Steve
McDonagh, Siobhain
Macdonald, Calum
McDonnell, John
McFall, John
McGuire, Mrs Anne
McIsaac, Shona
McKenna, Mrs Rosemary
Mackinlay, Andrew
McNamara, Kevin
McNulty, Tony
MacShane, Denis
Mactaggart, Fiona
McWilliam, John
Mahon, Mrs Alice
Mallaber, Judy
Marek, Dr John
Marsden, Gordon (Blackpool S)
Marsden, Paul (Shrewsbury)
Marshall, David (Shettleston)
Marshall, Jim (Leicester S)
Marshall-Andrews, Robert
Martlew, Eric
Maxton, John
Meacher, Rt Hon Michael
Merron, Gillian
Michael, Alun
Michie, Bill (Shef'ld Heeley)
Michie, Mrs Ray (Argyll & Bute)
Milburn, Alan
Miller, Andrew
Mitchell, Austin
Moffatt, Laura
Moonie, Dr Lewis
Moore, Michael
Moran, Ms Margaret
Morgan, Alasdair (Galloway)
Morgan, Ms Julie (Cardiff N)
Morgan, Rhodri (Cardiff W)
Morley, Elliot
Morris, Ms Estelle (B'ham Yardley)
Mudie, George
Mullin, Chris
Murphy, Denis (Wansbeck)
Norris, Dan
Oaten, Mark
O'Brien, Bill (Normanton)
O'Brien, Mike (N Warks)
Olner, Bill
O'Neill, Martin
Öpik, Lembit
Organ, Mrs Diana
Osborne, Ms Sandra
Pearson, Ian
Pendry, Tom
Perham, Ms Linda
Pickthall, Colin
Pike, Peter L
Plaskitt, James
Pond, Chris
Pound, Stephen
Powell, Sir Raymond
Prentice, Ms Bridget (Lewisham E)
Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Prescott, Rt Hon John
Primarolo, Dawn
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Ken
Quin, Ms Joyce
Quinn, Lawrie
Radice, Giles
Rammell, Bill
Rapson, Syd
Raynsford, Nick
Reed, Andrew (Loughborough)
Reid, Rt Hon Dr John (Hamilton N)
Rendel, David
Robertson, Rt Hon George
(Hamilton S)
Robinson, Geoffrey (Cov'try NW)
Roche, Mrs Barbara
Rogers, Allan
Rooker, Jeff
Rooney, Terry
Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)
Rowlands, Ted
Ruane, Chris
Ruddock, Ms Joan
Russell, Bob (Colchester)
Ryan, Ms Joan
Salmond, Alex
Salter, Martin
Sanders, Adrian
Sarwar, Mohammad
Savidge, Malcolm
Sawford, Phil
Sedgemore, Brian
Shaw, Jonathan
Sheldon, Rt Hon Robert
Shipley, Ms Debra
Simpson, Alan (Nottingham S)
Singh, Marsha
Skinner, Dennis
Smith, Rt Hon Andrew (Oxford E)
Smith, Rt Hon Chris (Islington S)
Smith, Miss Geraldine
(Morecambe & Lunesdale)
Smith, Jacqui (Redditch)
Smith, John (Glamorgan)
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)
Smith, Sir Robert (W Ab'd'ns)
Snape, Peter
Soley, Clive
Spellar, John
Squire, Ms Rachel
Starkey, Dr Phyllis
Steinberg, Gerry
Stevenson, George
Stewart, Ian (Eccles)
Stinchcombe, Paul
Stoate, Dr Howard
Stott, Roger
Strang, Rt Hon Dr Gavin
Straw, Rt Hon Jack
Stringer, Graham
Stuart, Ms Gisela
Stunell, Andrew
Sutcliffe, Gerry
Taylor, Rt Hon Mrs Ann
(Dewsbury)
Taylor, Ms Dari (Stockton S)
Taylor, David (NW Leics)
Taylor, Matthew (Truro)
Temple-Morris, Peter
Thomas, Gareth (Clwyd W)
Thomas, Gareth R (Harrow W)
Timms, Stephen
Tipping, Paddy
Todd, Mark
Tonge, Dr Jenny
Touhig, Don
Trickett, Jon
Truswell, Paul
Turner, Dennis (Wolverh'ton SE)
Turner, Dr Desmond (Kemptown)
Tyler, Paul
Vis, Dr Rudi
Wallace, James
Ward, Ms Claire
Wareing, Robert N
Watts, David
Webb, Steve
Welsh, Andrew
White, Brian
Whitehead, Dr Alan
Wicks, Malcolm
Wigley, Rt Hon Dafydd
Williams, Rt Hon Alan
(Swansea W)
Williams, Alan W (E Carmarthen)
Willis, Phil
Winnick, David
Wise, Audrey
Wood, Mike
Woolas, Phil
Worthington, Tony
Wray, James
Wright, Anthony D (Gt Yarmouth)
Wright, Dr Tony (Cannock)
Wyatt, Derek

Tellers for the Noes:


Mr. Greg Pope and
Mr. Keith Hill.

Question accordingly negatived.

15 Dec 1998 : Column 822

Main Question put forthwith, pursuant to Standing Order No. 62 (Amendment on Second or Third Reading), and agreed to.

Bill accordingly read a Second time.

Ordered,



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