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Session 2003 - 04
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Order of Business 21 January 2004

Here you can browse the House of Commons Order of Business for 21 January 2004.

* indicates a question for oral answer.
[R] indicates that the Member has declared a relevant interest.
Questions for oral answer not reached receive a written answer.
Supplementary questions will also be asked. Other Ministers may also answer.

+ indicates Government business.
Timings are indicative only.

At 11.30 a.m.      Prayers

Private Business

        Note: Private Business is not debated at this time, and may not be proceeded with if opposed.

London Local Authorities Bill [LORDS]. (By Order.): Adjourned debate on Question (7th January)

        Motion made and Question proposed, That the promoters of the London Local Authorities Bill [Lords] may, notwithstanding anything in the Standing Orders or practice of this House, proceed with the Bill in the present Session; and the Petition for the Bill shall be deemed to have been deposited and all Standing Orders applicable to it shall be deemed to have been complied with;

        That, if the Bill is brought from the Lords in the present Session, a declaration signed by the agent shall be deposited in the Private Bill Office, stating that the Bill is the same in every respect as the Bill brought from the Lords in the last Session;

        That the Clerk in the Private Bill Office shall lay upon the Table of the House a certificate, that such a declaration has been deposited;

        That in the present session the Bill shall be deemed to have passed through every stage through which it passed in the last Session, and shall be recorded in the Journal of the House as having passed those stages;

        That no further fees shall be charged to such stages.—(The Chairman of Ways and Means)

Oral Questions to the Secretary of State for Wales
*1 Mr John Smith (Vale of Glamorgan):    What discussions he has had with the Home Office on crime statistics in the Vale of Glamorgan.
( 148349 )
*2 Mr Win Griffiths (Bridgend):    When the Wales sub-group dealing with matters relating to miners compensation schemes for chest diseases and vibration white finger last met; and what progress was reported.
( 148351 )
*3 Ian Lucas (Wrexham):    What discussions he has had with the Assembly Secretary of Education concerning the funding of student support for students from Wales attending English and Scottish universities in (a) 2006, (b) 2007 and (c) 2008.
( 148352 )
*4 Hywel Williams (Caernarfon):    What assessment he has made of the likely change in the number of holiday homes in Wales as a result of the Chancellor's proposals regarding changes to self-invested personal pensions schemes.
( 148353 )
*5 Mr Roger Williams (Brecon & Radnorshire):    If he will make a statement on arrangements for retirement on grounds of ill health for miners in Wales.
( 148354 )
*6 Mr Martyn Jones (Clwyd South):    If he will make a statement on payments to retired miners and their families in Wales under the respiratory disease and vibration white finger compensation scheme.
( 148355 )
*7 Michael Fabricant (Lichfield):    What recent discussions he has had with the First Secretary on police funding in Wales; and if he will make a statement.
( 148356 )
*8 Mrs Betty Williams (Conwy):    If he will make a statement on trends in vehicle crime in North Wales.
( 148358 )
*9 Kevin Brennan (Cardiff West):    What discussions he has had with the First Secretary on the devolution of higher education funding for students to the National Assembly for Wales.
( 148359 )
*10 Mr Martin Caton (Gower):    What assessment he has made of the impact of the national minimum wage in Wales.
( 148360 )
*11 Mr Desmond Swayne (New Forest West):    What recent discussions he has had with North Wales Police Authority about reducing the numbers held in police cells in North Wales.
( 148361 )
*12 Mr James Gray (North Wiltshire):    What recent discussions he has had with the First Secretary about the Barnett Formula.
( 148362 )

At 12 noon
Unless otherwise indicated the Members listed below will ask a Question without notice.
Oral Questions to the Prime Minister
*Q1 David Burnside (South Antrim):    If he will list his official engagements for Wednesday 21st January.
( 149311 )
*Q2 Mr Stephen O'Brien (Eddisbury):    
( 149312 )
*Q3 Mr Desmond Swayne (New Forest West):    
( 149313 )
*Q4 Mr David Amess (Southend West):    
( 149314 )
*Q5 Kevin Brennan (Cardiff West):    
( 149315 )
*Q6 Mr Anthony Steen (Totnes):    If he will make an official visit to the Friends' Meeting House in Totnes.
( 149316 )
*Q7 Mr Laurence Robertson (Tewkesbury):    
( 149317 )
*Q8 Paddy Tipping (Sherwood):    
( 149318 )
*Q9 Mr James Paice (South East Cambridgeshire):    
( 149319 )
*Q10 Mr Ken Purchase (Wolverhampton North East):    
( 149320 )
*Q11 Mr John Taylor (Solihull):    
( 149321 )
*Q12 Ross Cranston (Dudley North):    
( 149322 )
*Q13 Dr Brian Iddon (Bolton South East):    
( 149323 )
*Q14 Albert Owen (Ynys Mo(r)n):    
( 149324 )
*Q15 Tony Wright (Cannock Chase):    
( 149325 )

At 12.30 p.m.Urgent Questions (if any)
Ministerial Statements (if any)

Preliminary Business

Notice of Presentation of Bill



[No debate]

      Sue Doughty
        Bill to require the drawing up and implementation of a strategy to promote sustainability among local communities; to make provision for the inclusion of targets and indicators in the strategy; to make provision for councils to implement the strategy in their area; to make provision in respect of the powers of electors in relation to the implementation of the strategy; and for connected purposes.

Formal first reading: no debate or decision.

Ten minute rule Motion



[Up to 20 minutes]

      Mr Peter Lilley
        That leave be given to bring in a Bill to require people to save for a guaranteed pension sufficient to avoid reliance on means-tested benefits.

        The Member moving and a Member opposing this Motion may each speak for up to ten minutes (Standing Order No. 23).

Main Business


OPPOSITION DAY (3rd allotted day)

[Until 7.00 p.m.]



      Mr Michael Howard
      David Davis
      Mr Kenneth Clarke
      Mr Oliver Heald
      Mr Alan Duncan
      David Maclean
 Mr Paul Tyler Mr Andrew Stunell   Mr Richard Allan Sir Robert Smith   Sir Menzies Campbell
        That this House calls on the Government to introduce a Civil Service Bill in this parliamentary session.

            As an Amendment to Mr Michael Howard's proposed Motion (Case for a Civil Service Bill):
      The Prime Minister
      Mr Secretary Prescott
      Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer
      Mr Peter Hain
      Mr Douglas Alexander
      Mr Phil Woolas
        Line      1,      leave out from `House' to end and add `welcomes the Government's commitment, in its response to the Ninth Report of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, to publish a draft Civil Service Bill for consultation; acknowledges the contribution made to the discussion of these issues in recent days by the Public Administration Select Committee; notes the failure of any previous Conservative Government to legislate for the Civil Service; and welcomes this Government's commitment to reforming and modernising the Civil Service to ensure that it continues to deliver a first class service to the people of this country.'.

        The First Report from the Public Administration Committee, Session 2003-04, HC 128-I, on A Draft Civil Service Bill: Completing the Reform, is relevant.



      Mr Michael Howard
      Mr David Curry
      Mr Peter Duncan
      Mr Alan Duncan
      Mrs Jacqui Lait
      David Maclean
        That this House deplores the practice of Right honourable and honourable Members representing Scottish constituences voting on bills concerning issues that have been devolved to the Scottish Parliament, especially those which introduce in England measures that have been rejected in Scotland; condemns the unfairness that this represents to those in English constituencies and the Government's failure to address the problem; notes that it is the practice of the honourable Member for Galloway and Upper Nithsdale voluntarily to abstain from voting on such legislation; calls on other Right honourable and honourable Members representing Scottish constituencies similarly to abstain from such votes; and believes that the fairest long-term solution is for bills on areas of policy which have been devolved to Scotland to be so ratified by the Speaker and for Right honourable and honourable Members from Scottish constituencies to abstain from voting on such bills.

            As Amendments to Mr Michael Howard's proposed Motion (Voting Rights for honourable Members Representing Scottish Seats):
      The Prime Minister
      Mr Secretary Prescott
      Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer
      Mr Secretary Darling
      Mr Peter Hain
      Mr Christopher Leslie
 Mrs Anne McGuire      
        Line      1,      leave out from `House' to end and add `believes that Parliament is the Parliament for the whole of the United Kingdom, and that all Right honourable and honourable Members are equal in status and have a right to speak and vote on all matters brought before Parliament; and opposes any step that would undermine the Union of the United Kingdom.'.

      Charles Kennedy
      Sir Menzies Campbell
      John Thurso
      Mr Paul Tyler
      Sir Robert Smith
      Mr Andrew Stunell
        Line      1,      leave out from `House' to end and add `compliments the Government on the successful implementation of devolution in accordance with the Cook/ Maclennan accord which has given to the devolved nations representative democracy and self-determination in domestic issues; notes the democratic deficit which exists in England and calls on the Government to complete devolution for England to address it; confirms that all Members of this House are, and should remain, equal in the Chamber and before the Speaker; and believes that creating a two-tier chamber would neither address the issue nor be in the long-term interests of the Union.'.

      Mr Alex Salmond
      Pete Wishart
      Annabelle Ewing
      Mr Michael Weir
      Angus Robertson
        Line      1,      leave out from `House' to end and add `supports the right of Right honourable and honourable Members representing Scottish constituencies to vote on all matters which affect Scotland under the current inadequate constitutional arrangements, including issues such as top-up fees in England, which the all-party Scottish Parliament Enterprise Committee unanimously concluded would have an adverse" financial impact on Scotland; notes that the honourable Member for Galloway and Upper Nithsdale has voted on English matters some 37 times since the last General Election; believes that Mr Speaker should be able to certify English business which has no legislative and financial impact in Scotland to be referred to an English affairs committee for passage through the House; further believes that this should be accompanied by transferring full financial powers from Westminster to the Scottish Parliament, so that policies designed for England do not have an adverse financial consequence for Scotland; notes that within the UK these reforms would be fair to both Scotland and England; but believes that independence for Scotland and independence for England is the best and stable solution to the problem of Scottish honourable Members voting on English business.'.

        The selection of the matters to be debated this day has been made by the Leader of the Opposition (Standing Order No. 14(2)).

Debate may continue until 7.00 p.m.

+  4  


[No debate]

      Secretary Tessa Jowell
        That the draft New Opportunities Fund (Specification of Initiative) Order 2004, which was laid before this House on 10th December, be approved.

To be decided without debate (Standing Order No. 118(6)).

At the end of the sitting:



        Proposed subject:      Honours system (Mr Russell Brown).

        Debate may continue until 7.30 p.m., or for half an hour, whichever is later (Standing Order No. 9 and Order of 29th October 2002).



1European Standing Committee A2.00 p.m.Room 10 (public)
To consider EU Document No. 12985/03 relating to Protection of Groundwater against Pollution.


2Office of the Deputy Prime Minister: Housing, Planning, Local Government and the Regions9.00 a.m.The Wilson Room, Portcullis House (private)
3Defence9.45 a.m.
10.00 a.m.
Room 15 (private)
Subject: Lessons of Iraq: Planning for a Post-Conflict Iraq.
Witnesses: Mr Edward Chaplin CMG OBE, Director, Middle East and North Africa, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Ms Carolyn Miller, Director, Europe, Middle East and Americas Division, Department for International Development, Air Vice Marshal Clive Loader OBE, Assistant Chief of Defence Staff (Operations), Ministry of Defence, and Mr Ian Lee, Director General, Operational Policy, Ministry of Defence.
4Environment, Food and Rural Affairs2.15 p.m.

3.30 p.m.
The Wilson Room, Portcullis House (private)
Subject: Implementation of CAP Reform in the UK.
Witness: National Farmers' Union.
5Scottish Affairs2.15 p.m.Room 18 (private)
6Treasury Sub-Committee2.15 p.m.
2.30 p.m.
Room 16 (private)
Subject: Administrative Costs of Tax Compliance.
Witnesses: Inland Revenue and HM Customs & Excise Officials.
7Accommodation and Works2.30 p.m.The Thatcher Room, Portcullis House (private)
8Defence2.30 p.m.
3.00 p.m.
Room 15 (private)
Subject: Lessons of Iraq: Personnel.
Witnesses: Lt General Anthony Palmer CBE, Deputy Chief of Defence Staff (Personnel), Group Captain Barbara Cooper CBE, Deputy Director, Service Personnel Policy Operations and Manning, Group Captain Nigel Beet, Deputy Assistant Chief of Staff, J1 (Personnel and Admin), Permanent Joint Headquarters (PJHQ), and Colonel Andrew Cowling OBE, Deputy Chief of Staff, 1 (UK) Armoured Division, Ministry of Defence.
9European Scrutiny2.30 p.m.Room 19 (private)
10Transport2.30 p.m.
2.45 p.m.
Room 6 (private)
Subject: The Work of the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency and the Vehicle Certification Agency.
Witnesses: Vehicle and Operator Services Agency; Vehicle Certification Agency (at approximately 3.45 p.m.).
11Environmental Audit3.30 p.m.
3.50 p.m.
Room 20 (private)
Subject: Pre-Budget Report 2003.
Witness: Mr John Healey MP, Economic Secretary, HM Treasury.
12Northern Ireland Affairs3.30 p.m.

3.45 p.m.
The Grimond Room, Portcullis House (private)
Subject: (i) The Compensation Agency; (ii) Forensic Science Northern Ireland.
Witnesses: (i) Anne McCleary, Chief Executive, The Compensation Agency; Rt Hon Mr John Spellar MP, Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office; (ii) Rt Hon Mr John Spellar MP, Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office.
13Public Accounts3.30 p.m.Room 8 (public)
Subject: Ministry of Defence: Operation TELIC—United Kingdom Military Operations in Iraq.
Witnesses: Sir Kevin Tebbit KCB CMG, Permanent Under-Secretary of State, Lt. General Robert Fry CBE, Deputy Chief Defence Staff (Commitments), and Air Chief Marshal Sir Malcolm Pledger KCB, Chief of Defence Logistics, Ministry of Defence.
14Selection4.45 p.m.Room 13 (private)


15Draft Disability Discrimination Bill2.30 p.m.Room 5 (private)

[The decision of a Committee to sit in public may be rescinded without notice.]

Written Ministerial Statements to be made today

1    Secretary of State for the Home Department:      UK passports—new rules on birth certificates.
2    Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer:      Commemorative Crown 2004.
3    Secretary of State for Trade and Industry:      Proposed gas desulphurisation plant at Rugeley coal fired power station.
4    Secretary of State for Health:      Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act 1990.
5    Secretary of State for Transport:      Rural Bus Challenge 2003.
6    Deputy Prime Minister:      Acceptance of robust details as an alternative to pre-completion testing for sound insulation.
7    Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs:      Results of the 2003 Wassenaar Arrangement.
8    Parliamentary Under Secretary of State, Department for Constitutional Affairs:      European Parliamentary and Local Elections: Pilot Regions for 2004.
9    Secretary of State for Defence:      UK Gulf veterans' mortality.


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Prepared 21 January 2004