Standing Orders of the House of Commons - Private Business 2001

Arrangement of Clauses (Contents)


  119.  [Repealed 12th November 1951]
  120.  Each member of a committee on an opposed private bill, or a group of private bills, shall, before he is entitled to attend and vote in such committee, sign the following declaration: Declaration by members of committee on
opposed bill.
(HL 96)
    I, having been selected by the Committee of Selection to serve as a member of the Committee on the.............Bill or on Group......of Private Bills, hereby declare, that I have no personal or constituency interest in the said bill or any bill included in the said group; that I recognise my obligation to attend every meeting of the Committee; and that I will never vote on any question which may arise without having duly heard and attended to the evidence relating thereto.
  And no such committee shall proceed to business until the said declaration has been so signed by each of such members.
  121.—(1)  A committee on an opposed private bill shall not be allowed to proceed if more than one of its members is absent, unless by special leave of the House, and if at any time during the sitting of the committee more than one of the members is absent, the chairman shall suspend the proceedings; and if at the expiration of one hour from the time fixed for the meeting of the committee, or from the time when the chairman so suspended the proceedings, more than one member is absent, the committee shall be adjourned to the next day on which the House sits, and then shall meet at the hour at which the committee met on the day of such adjournment. Quorum of committee on
opposed bill.
(HL 106)
  (2)  If, at any time after the committee has been formed, the required quorum of members cannot attend in consequence of any of the members having become incapacitated by illness or otherwise from continuing to serve on the committee, the chairman shall report the circumstances of the case to the House, in order that such measures may be taken by the House as will enable the members still remaining on the committee to proceed with the business referred to it, or as the emergency of the case may require.
  122.—(1)  If the chairman of a committee on an opposed private bill is absent from the committee, the member next in rotation on the list of members who is present shall act as chairman. Absence of chairman or members of committee on
opposed bill.
(HL 105)
  (2) A member of any such committee shall not absent himself from his duties thereon, except in the case of illness or by leave of the House.
  123.  In the case of an opposed bill promoted by a local authority containing clauses by which it is proposed to create powers relating to police, sanitary or other local government matters in conflict with, deviation from, or excess of, the provisions of the general law, the committee to whom the bill is referred shall, when considering such clauses as aforesaid, have the assistance of the Counsel to the Speaker. Committees on certain bills to have assistance of Counsel to
the Speaker.
  124.  The committee on each group of bills shall take first into consideration the bill or bills named by the Committee of Selection to be taken into consideration at the first sitting of the committee, and the committee shall, from time to time, appoint the day on which it will enter upon the consideration of each of the remaining bills, and on which it will require the parties severally promoting or opposing the same to enter appearances; and not less than two clear days' notice of such appointment shall be given by the clerk attending the committee; and if the committee defers the consideration of any bill, notice shall be given of the day to which the same is deferred. Order in which bills are to be considered by committee.
(HL 107)
  125.  Every committee on an opposed private bill shall report to the House the cause of any adjournment over any day on which the House is to sit. Adjournment of committee on opposed bill.
(HL 108)
  126.  There shall stand referred to the committee on an opposed private bill— Reference to committee of petitions against bill. (HL 109)
      (a) every petition presented in accordance with Standing Order 171A (Petitions against private bills) against the bill, and
      (b) every petition which has been deposited in the Private Bill Office and in which the petitioners complain of any amendment as proposed in the filled-up bill, or of any proposed additional provision or of any matter which has arisen during the progress of the bill before the committee,
being a petition in which the petitioners have prayed to be heard by themselves, their counsel or agents: and copies of all such petitions shall be laid before each member of the committee.
  127.—(1) The promoters of an opposed private bill shall be entitled to be heard before the committee on the bill, by themselves, their counsel or agents, in favour of the bill and against any petitions against the bill which stand referred to the committee under Standing Order 126 (Reference to committee of petitions against bill). Right of audience before committees on opposed bills. (HL 110)
  (2) Any petitioners whose petitions stand referred as aforesaid shall, subject to the rules and orders of the House, and to the prayer of their petition, be entitled to be heard upon their petition by themselves, their counsel or agents.
  128.  No petition against a private bill shall be taken into consideration by the committee on the bill, which does not distinctly specify the ground on which the petitioner objects to any of the provisions thereof; and the petitioner shall be heard only on the grounds so stated; and, if it appears to the committee that such grounds are not specified with sufficient accuracy, it may direct that it shall be provided with a more specific statement, in writing, but limited to such grounds of objection so inaccurately specified. Petition against bill must distinctly specify grounds of objection.
(HL 111)
  129.  [Repealed 12th November 1951]
  130.  A petitioner against a bill originating in the House of Lords who has discussed clauses in that House shall not on that account be precluded from opposing the preamble of the bill in this House. Rights of petitioners in case of bills brought from House of Lords. (HL 112)
  131.  In the case of any opposed private bill, in which no party has appeared on a petition against the bill or on a petition complaining of amendments as proposed in the filled-up bill, or all parties who have so appeared have withdrawn their opposition before the evidence of the promoters has been commenced, the committee to which the bill has been referred shall forthwith refer back the bill, with a statement of the facts, to the Committee of Selection which shall treat it as an unopposed bill. Non-appearance of petitioners. (HL 113)
  131A.  Whenever copies of the minutes of the evidence taken before a committee on an opposed private bill are required they shall be duplicated at the expense of the parties: Printing of minutes of evidence.
(HL 110)
  Provided that the minutes may be printed instead of duplicated if the Chairman of Ways and Means has given authority for printing, on an application made to him by the promoters of the bill not less than six clear days before the first meeting of the committee.

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Prepared 5 July 2001