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Mr. Deputy Speaker: That is not a matter for a Chair. It is for the hon. Member to be sure that he or she satisfies the requirements of the House.

Mr. Djanogly: Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker.

When I first had sight of this draft legislation, I was shocked at the two days that had been allocated for the discussion of this stage of the Bill. I know that I am not allowed to talk about the other 14 measly days, but even in these two days, we are being asked to review some 20 clauses that deal with an enormous raft of legislation and, indeed, a whole new tax—and an extremely complicated one, at that. I fully support my hon. Friends in saying that we have not been given enough time to debate these issues. As my hon. Friend the Member for Arundel and South Downs (Mr. Flight) mentioned, we are not the only people saying that. In the last few days, my hon. Friends and I have received a host of letters from professionals, business people, retailers and property business people, complaining about the lack of consultation and their inability to get their heads round what is going on here, in terms of the time being allowed for discussion of these matters.

To my mind, less consultation means that more time is required at this stage, rather than less. The worst example of that relates to the stamp duty land tax, which will be discussed over the next two days. I have received an enormous number of complaints about the clause dealing with that provision, and a flood of articles has appeared in the press over recent days. I shall mention one that came in this morning—it was probably written last night—from the tax law committee of the Law Society, which states:


The committee goes on to say:


and that

13 May 2003 : Column 180


There are very serious issues involved here. This stamp duty involves some £8 billion of revenue. Surely that deserves more time for discussion.

1.12 pm

Dawn Primarolo: It has been the practice to allocate two days for the discussion of Finance Bills by the Committee of the whole House for a very long time. I have checked the record as far back as I could while in the Chamber, and two days has been the allocated period for at least the last eight Finance Bills, if not more. The Committee of the whole House sits on a Finance Bill for two days. That was agreed through the usual channels. The next procedure is that the Opposition parties are invited to propose the issues that they wish to debate in those two days. The Government have no control over that. As the House will see, the Opposition parties have picked a rather large range of issues, but that is entirely up to them. The internal record shows that the sitting of the Committee that discussed this programme motion for the Committee of the whole House lasted for only two minutes, and that there was no Division on the matter.

As some hon. Members have said in this short debate, it has always been my practice to ensure that there is ample time and thorough debate within the proceedings of the House for the discussion of the Finance Bill. Indeed, the Opposition approached me as a Minister and explained that there were two particular schedules to which they wished to table a large number of amendments. Those schedules were then moved back into Committee. I am therefore rather at a loss. When in government, the Conservatives allowed two days for the debates involving the Committee of the whole House. This Government also allow two days, as is the practice of the House. The Opposition parties were fully aware that two days were to be allocated, and they are fully aware of the decision of the House on programme motions. None the less, they advanced a very large number of subjects for debate during these two days. It seems to me that they are actually complaining about their own judgment at having proposed so many subjects for discussion, or perhaps they were trying to use up time so as to give their Members time to get from their luncheon clubs for the vote.

Mr. Wilshire: Will the right hon. Lady give way?

Dawn Primarolo: No, I will not.

The fact of the matter is that this was done with agreement, in discussion—

Mr. Wilshire: Will the right hon. Lady give way?

Dawn Primarolo: No, I will not give way to the hon. Gentleman.

The programme motion is before the House. The record is clear. The discussions have been held, and the two days—

Mr. Wilshire: On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker. Is it in order to say that something was done with agreement when it patently was not done with agreement?

13 May 2003 : Column 181

Mr. Deputy Speaker: That is a matter for debate, not a point of order.

Dawn Primarolo: I said, with regard to the internal record, that there was no Division on this matter. The agreement was that there would be two days, and that was my understanding in all the discussions that I have had with the Opposition parties.

Mr. Wilshire: Will the right hon. Lady give way?

Dawn Primarolo: No, I will not give way.

The programme motion has been discussed, and the two days have been allocated. The Opposition parties themselves—not the Government—chose the debates. Of course, they are absolutely right to say that it is the Government's responsibility—and my responsibility as a Minister on this Bill—to ensure that, within the procedures of the House, there is proper time to discuss the Finance Bill. I intend to ensure that that happens, and I therefore move the programme motion only for the two days' debate on the Floor of the House. The programme motion for other business will be discussed elsewhere at the appropriate time.

Question put:—

The House divided: Ayes 244, Noes 137.

Division No. 188
[1:17 pm


AYES


Abbott, Ms Diane
Ainsworth, Bob (Cov'try NE)
Alexander, Douglas
Allen, Graham
Armstrong, rh Ms Hilary
Atkins, Charlotte
Austin, John
Bailey, Adrian
Barnes, Harry
Battle, John
Bayley, Hugh
Beard, Nigel
Benn, Hilary
Benton, Joe (Bootle)
Blackman, Liz
Blears, Ms Hazel
Blizzard, Bob
Bradley, rh Keith (Withington)
Bradshaw, Ben
Brennan, Kevin
Brown, Russell (Dumfries)
Browne, Desmond
Bryant, Chris
Burden, Richard
Burgon, Colin
Burnham, Andy
Cairns, David
Campbell, Alan (Tynemouth)
Campbell, Mrs Anne (C'bridge)
Caplin, Ivor
Casale, Roger
Caton, Martin
Chapman, Ben (Wirral S)
Clark, Dr. Lynda (Edinburgh Pentlands)
Clark, Paul (Gillingham)
Clarke, rh Tom (Coatbridge & Chryston)
Clarke, Tony (Northampton S)
Clelland, David
Clwyd, Ann (Cynon V)
Coffey, Ms Ann
Coleman, Iain
Colman, Tony
Cook, Frank (Stockton N)
Cooper, Yvette
Corbyn, Jeremy
Corston, Jean
Cousins, Jim
Cox, Tom (Tooting)
Cranston, Ross
Crausby, David
Cruddas, Jon
Cryer, Ann (Keighley)
Cryer, John (Hornchurch)
Cunningham, Jim (Coventry S)
Cunningham, Tony (Workington)
Dalyell, Tam
Darling, rh Alistair
Davey, Valerie (Bristol W)
David, Wayne
Davidson, Ian
Davies, rh Denzil (Llanelli)
Davis, rh Terry (B'ham Hodge H)
Dawson, Hilton
Dean, Mrs Janet
Dhanda, Parmjit
Dobbin, Jim (Heywood)
Donohoe, Brian H.
Dowd, Jim (Lewisham W)
Drew, David (Stroud)
Drown, Ms Julia
Eagle, Angela (Wallasey)
Edwards, Huw
Efford, Clive
Ellman, Mrs Louise
Farrelly, Paul
Field, rh Frank (Birkenhead)
Fitzpatrick, Jim
Foster, Michael (Worcester)
Foster, Michael Jabez (Hastings & Rye)
Foulkes, rh George
Francis, Dr. Hywel
Gapes, Mike (Ilford S)
Gardiner, Barry
George, rh Bruce (Walsall S)
Goggins, Paul
Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)
Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Hall, Mike (Weaver Vale)
Hall, Patrick (Bedford)
Hanson, David
Harman, rh Ms Harriet
Harris, Tom (Glasgow Cathcart)
Havard, Dai (Merthyr Tydfil & Rhymney)
Healey, John
Hendrick, Mark
Hepburn, Stephen
Hewitt, rh Ms Patricia
Heyes, David
Hill, Keith (Streatham)
Hinchliffe, David
Hoey, Kate (Vauxhall)
Hoon, rh Geoffrey
Hopkins, Kelvin
Howarth, George (Knowsley N & Sefton E)
Howells, Dr. Kim
Hughes, Kevin (Doncaster N)
Hutton, rh John
Iddon, Dr. Brian
Irranca-Davies, Huw
Jackson, Glenda (Hampstead & Highgate)
Jamieson, David
Jenkins, Brian
Jones, Helen (Warrington N)
Jones, Jon Owen (Cardiff C)
Jones, Lynne (Selly Oak)
Joyce, Eric (Falkirk W)
Kaufman, rh Gerald
Keen, Alan (Feltham)
Kemp, Fraser
Khabra, Piara S.
Kidney, David
Kilfoyle, Peter
King, Ms Oona (Bethnal Green & Bow)
Knight, Jim (S Dorset)
Kumar, Dr. Ashok
Ladyman, Dr. Stephen
Lammy, David
Laxton, Bob (Derby N)
Lazarowicz, Mark
Lepper, David
Levitt, Tom (High Peak)
Lewis, Ivan (Bury S)
Lewis, Terry (Worsley)
Linton, Martin
Love, Andrew
Lucas, Ian (Wrexham)
Luke, Iain (Dundee E)
McAvoy, Thomas
McCabe, Stephen
McDonagh, Siobhain
MacDonald, Calum
MacDougall, John
McFall, John
McGuire, Mrs Anne
McIsaac, Shona
McKechin, Ann
McKenna, Rosemary
McNamara, Kevin
Mahon, Mrs Alice
Mallaber, Judy
Mandelson, rh Peter
Mann, John (Bassetlaw)
Marris, Rob (Wolverh'ton SW)
Marshall-Andrews, Robert
Martlew, Eric
Milburn, rh Alan
Miliband, David
Miller, Andrew
Moffatt, Laura
Morgan, Julie
Morley, Elliot
Morris, rh Estelle
Mountford, Kali
Mudie, George
Mullin, Chris
Munn, Ms Meg
Murphy, Denis (Wansbeck)
Murphy, Jim (Eastwood)
Naysmith, Dr. Doug
Norris, Dan (Wansdyke)
O'Brien, Bill (Normanton)
Olner, Bill
O'Neill, Martin
Organ, Diana
Owen, Albert
Palmer, Dr. Nick
Perham, Linda
Picking, Anne
Pickthall, Colin
Pike, Peter (Burnley)
Plaskitt, James
Pond, Chris (Gravesham)
Pound, Stephen
Prentice, Ms Bridget (Lewisham E)
Prentice, Gordon (Pendle)
Primarolo, rh Dawn
Prosser, Gwyn
Purchase, Ken
Quinn, Lawrie
Rapson, Syd (Portsmouth N)
Reed, Andy (Loughborough)
Rooney, Terry
Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)
Roy, Frank (Motherwell)
Ruane, Chris
Ruddock, Joan
Ryan, Joan (Enfield N)
Salter, Martin
Sarwar, Mohammad
Savidge, Malcolm
Sawford, Phil
Shaw, Jonathan
Sheerman, Barry
Sheridan, Jim
Shipley, Ms Debra
Singh, Marsha
Smith, Angela (Basildon)
Smith, Jacqui (Redditch)
Smith, Llew (Blaenau Gwent)
Soley, Clive
Southworth, Helen
Squire, Rachel
Starkey, Dr. Phyllis
Steinberg, Gerry
Stevenson, George
Stinchcombe, Paul
Stuart, Ms Gisela
Tami, Mark (Alyn)
Taylor, Dari (Stockton S)
Taylor, David (NW Leics)
Thomas, Gareth (Clwyd W)
Thomas, Gareth (Harrow W)
Trickett, Jon
Truswell, Paul
Turner, Dennis (Wolverh'ton SE)
Turner, Dr. Desmond (Brighton Kemptown)
Turner, Neil (Wigan)
Twigg, Derek (Halton)
Tynan, Bill (Hamilton S)
Vis, Dr. Rudi
Wareing, Robert N.
Watts, David
White, Brian
Whitehead, Dr. Alan
Williams, rh Alan (Swansea W)
Williams, Betty (Conwy)
Winnick, David
Winterton, Ms Rosie (Doncaster C)
Wood, Mike (Batley)
Woodward, Shaun
Worthington, Tony
Wright, David (Telford)
Wright, Tony (Cannock)
Wyatt, Derek

Tellers for the Ayes:


Gillian Merron and
Mr. Phil Woolas


NOES


Allan, Richard
Amess, David
Ancram, rh Michael
Atkinson, Peter (Hexham)
Bacon, Richard
Baron, John (Billericay)
Barrett, John
Bellingham, Henry
Bercow, John
Blunt, Crispin
Brady, Graham
Brake, Tom (Carshalton)
Brazier, Julian
Breed, Colin
Browning, Mrs Angela
Burns, Simon
Burstow, Paul
Butterfill, John
Cable, Dr. Vincent
Calton, Mrs Patsy
Cameron, David
Campbell, Gregory (E Lond'y)
Campbell, rh Menzies (NE Fife)
Cash, William
Chapman, Sir Sydney (Chipping Barnet)
Chope, Christopher
Clapham, Michael
Cormack, Sir Patrick
Curry, rh David
Davey, Edward (Kingston)
Davis, rh David (Haltemprice & Howden)
Djanogly, Jonathan
Dodds, Nigel
Donaldson, Jeffrey M.
Duncan, Peter (Galloway)
Fallon, Michael
Field, Mark (Cities of London & Westminster)
Flight, Howard
Flook, Adrian
Forth, rh Eric
Foster, Don (Bath)
Francois, Mark
George, Andrew (St. Ives)
Gibb, Nick (Bognor Regis)
Gidley, Sandra
Gillan, Mrs Cheryl
Gray, James (N Wilts)
Grayling, Chris
Green, Matthew (Ludlow)
Grieve, Dominic
Gummer, rh John
Hague, rh William
Hammond, Philip
Harris, Dr. Evan (Oxford W & Abingdon)
Harvey, Nick
Hawkins, Nick
Heald, Oliver
Heath, David
Hendry, Charles
Hermon, Lady
Hogg, rh Douglas
Horam, John (Orpington)
Hughes, Simon (Southwark N)
Jack, rh Michael
Key, Robert (Salisbury)
Kirkbride, Miss Julie
Lait, Mrs Jacqui
Lamb, Norman
Lansley, Andrew
Laws, David (Yeovil)
Lewis, Dr. Julian (New Forest E)
Liddell-Grainger, Ian
Lidington, David
Llwyd, Elfyn
Loughton, Tim
Luff, Peter (M-Worcs)
Mackay, rh Andrew
Maclean, rh David
McLoughlin, Patrick
Malins, Humfrey
Mercer, Patrick
Mitchell, Andrew (Sutton Coldfield)
Moore, Michael
Moss, Malcolm
Murrison, Dr. Andrew
Oaten, Mark (Winchester)
O'Brien, Stephen (Eddisbury)
Osborne, George (Tatton)
Paice, James
Paterson, Owen
Pickles, Eric
Portillo, rh Michael
Price, Adam (E Carmarthen & Dinefwr)
Prisk, Mark (Hertford)
Randall, John
Redwood, rh John
Robathan, Andrew
Robertson, Angus (Moray)
Robertson, Hugh (Faversham & M-Kent)
Robertson, Laurence (Tewk'b'ry)
Rosindell, Andrew
Russell, Bob (Colchester)
Sanders, Adrian
Sayeed, Jonathan
Selous, Andrew
Shephard, rh Mrs Gillian
Shepherd, Richard
Simpson, Keith (M-Norfolk)
Smith, Sir Robert (W Ab'd'ns & Kincardine)
Smyth, Rev. Martin (Belfast S)
Spelman, Mrs Caroline
Spink, Bob (Castle Point)
Spring, Richard
Steen, Anthony
Stunell, Andrew
Swayne, Desmond
Swire, Hugo (E Devon)
Taylor, John (Solihull)
Taylor, Matthew (Truro)
Taylor, Sir Teddy
Thomas, Simon (Ceredigion)
Thurso, John
Turner, Andrew (Isle of Wight)
Tyler, Paul (N Cornwall)
Viggers, Peter
Watkinson, Angela
Weir, Michael
Whittingdale, John
Widdecombe, rh Miss Ann
Wiggin, Bill
Williams, Roger (Brecon)
Willis, Phil
Wilshire, David
Winterton, Ann (Congleton)
Wishart, Pete
Yeo, Tim (S Suffolk)
Young, rh Sir George

Tellers for the Noes:


Mr. Robert Syms and
Mr. Mark Hoban

Question accordingly agreed to.

13 May 2003 : Column 184

13 May 2003 : Column 185

Orders of the Day


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