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Standing Orders of the House of Commons - Public Business 2004 Contents


APPENDIX

RESOLUTIONS ANDTEMPORARY STANDING ORDERS

RESOLUTIONS
Matters sub judice

Resolution of 15th November 2001

Resolved, That, subject to the discretion of the Chair, and to the right of the House to legislate on any matter or to discuss any delegated legislation, the House in all its proceedings (including proceedings of committees of the House) shall apply the following rules on matters sub judice:

(1) Cases in which proceedings are active in United Kingdom courts shall not be referred to in any motion, debate or question.

    (a) (i) Criminal proceedings are active when a charge has been made or a summons to appear has been issued, or, in Scotland, a warrant to cite has been granted.

      (ii) Criminal proceedings cease to be active when they are concluded by verdict and sentence or discontinuance, or, in cases dealt with by courts martial, after the conclusion of the mandatory post-trial review.

    (b) (i) Civil proceedings are active when arrangements for the hearing, such as setting down a case for trial, have been made, until the proceedings are ended by judgment or discontinuance.

      (ii) Any application made in or for the purposes of any civil proceedings shall be treated as a distinct proceeding.

    (c) Appellate proceedings, whether criminal or civil, are active from the time when they are commenced by application for leave to appeal or by notice of appeal until ended by judgment or discontinuance.

But where a ministerial decision is in question, or in the opinion of the Chair a case concerns issues of national importance such as the economy, public order or the essential services, reference to the issues or the case may be made in motions, debates or questions.

(2) Specific matters which the House has expressly referred to any judicial body for decision and report shall not be referred to in any motion, debate or question, from the time when the Resolution of the House is passed until the report is laid before the House.

(3) For the purposes of this Resolution—

    (a) Matters before Coroners Courts or Fatal Accident Inquiries shall be treated as matters within paragraph (1)(a);

    (b) 'Motion' includes a motion for leave to bring in a bill; and

    (c) 'Question' includes a supplementary question.


Scrutiny of European Business

Resolution of 17th November 1998, as in effect following the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam.

Resolved, That the Resolution of the House of 24th October 1990 relating to European Community Legislation be rescinded and the following Resolution be made:

That—

(1) No Minister of the Crown should give agreement in the Council or in the European Council to any proposal for European Community legislation or for a common strategy, joint action or common position under Title V or a common position, framework decision, decision or convention under Title VI of the Treaty on European Union—

    (a) which is still subject to scrutiny (that is, on which the European Scrutiny Committee has not completed its scrutiny) or

    (b) which is awaiting consideration by the House (that is, which has been recommended by the European Scrutiny Committee for consideration pursuant to Standing Order No. 119 (European Standing Committees) but in respect of which the House has not come to a Resolution).

(2) In this Resolution, any reference to agreement to a proposal includes—

    (a) agreement to a programme, plan or recommendation for European Community legislation;

    (b) political agreement;

    (c) in the case of a proposal on which the Council acts in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 251 of the Treaty of Rome (co-decision), agreement to a common position, to an act in the form of a common position incorporating amendments proposed by the European Parliament, and to a joint text; and

    (d) in the case of a proposal on which the Council acts in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 252 of the Treaty of Rome (co-operation), agreement to a common position.

(3) The Minister concerned may, however, give agreement—

    (a) to a proposal which is still subject to scrutiny if he considers that it is confidential, routine or trivial or is substantially the same as a proposal on which scrutiny has been completed;

    (b) to a proposal which is awaiting consideration by the House if the European Scrutiny Committee has indicated that agreement need not be withheld pending consideration.

(4) The Minister concerned may also give agreement to a proposal which is still subject to scrutiny or awaiting consideration by the House if he decides that for special reasons agreement should be given; but he should explain his reasons—

    (a) in every such case, to the European Scrutiny Committee at the first opportunity after reaching his decision; and

    (b) in the case of a proposal awaiting consideration by the House, to the House at the first opportunity after giving agreement.

(5) In relation to any proposal which requires adoption by unanimity, abstention shall, for the purposes of paragraph (4), be treated as giving agreement.

Questions to Ministers

Resolution of 25th October 1999

Resolved, That, subject always to the discretion of the Chair, and in addition to the established rules of order on the form and content of questions, questions may not be tabled on matters for which responsibility has been devolved by legislation to the Scottish Parliament or the National Assembly for Wales unless the question:

    (a) seeks information which the United Kingdom Government is empowered to require of the devolved executive, or

    (b) relates to matters which:

      (i) are included in legislative proposals introduced or to be introduced in the United Kingdom Parliament,

      (ii) are concerned with the operation of a concordat or other instrument of liaison between the United Kingdom Government and the devolved executive, or

      (iii) United Kingdom Government ministers have taken an official interest in, or

    (c) presses for action by United Kingdom ministers in areas in which they retain administrative powers.

  

TEMPORARY STANDING ORDERS

New provision for earlier sittings on Tuesdays[1] and  Wednesdays, and for Thursdays and Fridays,  29th October 2002

Ordered, That, with effect from 1st January 2003 until the end of the Parliament, the Standing Orders and practice of the House shall have effect subject to the following modifications:

(1) Subject to paragraph (3) of this order and to paragraph (14)(a) of Standing Order No. 1B (Election of Speaker by secret ballot), the House shall meet on Tuesdays and Wednesdays at half­past eleven o'clock and—

    (a) the moment of interruption shall be at seven o'clock;

    (b) in their application to such sittings, reference to a specified time in the Standing Orders shall be interpreted as reference to a time three hours earlier, except that reference to twelve o'clock in Standing Order No. 24 (Adjournment on specific and important matter that should have urgent consideration) shall be read as reference to half­past ten o'clock, and that references to one o'clock, a quarter past one o'clock and half­past three o'clock in Standing Order No. 88 (Meetings of standing committees) shall be read as references to twenty­five minutes past eleven o'clock, twenty minutes to twelve o'clock and two o'clock respectively; and

    (c) divisions deferred under the provisions of the Order (Deferred Divisions) shall be held at half­past Twelve o'clock.

(2) On Tuesdays and Wednesdays the sitting in Westminster Hall shall begin at half­past nine o'clock, shall be suspended from half­past eleven o'clock until two o'clock and may then continue for up to a further two and a half hours (and in calculating that period no account shall be taken of any period during which the sitting may be suspended owing to a division being called in the House or a Committee of the whole House).

(3) Paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Order shall not apply to a Tuesday or Wednesday sitting which immediately follows a periodic adjournment of more than two days or is the first day of a Session, and in the former case the sitting in Westminster Hall shall begin at half­past nine o'clock and conclude at two o'clock.

(4) On Thursdays the provisions of paragraph (1) of this Order shall apply (and the provisions of paragraphs (2) and (3) shall not apply), except that the moment of interruption shall be at six o'clock and—

    (a) opposed private business under Standing Order No. 20 (Time for taking private business), urgent debates set down for the same day by direction of the Speaker under Standing Order No. 24 (Adjournment on specific and important matter that should have urgent consideration), opposition half­day debates under paragraph (2)(c)(ii) of Standing Order No. 14 (Arrangement of public business) and half­day Estimates debates under paragraph (3)(b) of Standing Order No. 54 (Consideration of estimates) shall begin at three o'clock;

    (b) opposition half­day debates under paragraph (2)(c)(i) of Standing Order No. 14 and half­day Estimates debates under paragraph (3)(a) of Standing Order No. 54 shall lapse, or be interrupted, as the case may be, at four o'clock; and

    (c) references to eleven o'clock and half­past eleven o'clock in Standing Orders No. 15 (Exempted business) and No. 17 (Delegated Legislation (negative procedure)) shall be read as references to seven o'clock and half­past seven o'clock respectively.

(5) Unless the House otherwise orders, the House shall not sit on any Friday other than those on which private Members' bills have precedence and—

    (a) when the House is not sitting on a Friday it shall, at its rising on the previous Thursday, stand adjourned till the following Monday without any question being put, unless it shall have resolved otherwise; and

    (b) paragraph (4) of Standing Order No. 12 (House not to sit on certain Fridays) shall apply to any Friday on which the House does not sit by virtue of this order, with the addition of notices of motions relating to proceedings on bills committed to a standing committee to the notices which may be received by the Public Bill Office under sub-paragraph (b) of that paragraph.

Modernisation of the House of Commons,
16th July 2001

Ordered, That a Select Committee of fifteen Members be appointed to consider how the practices and procedures of the House should be modernised, and to make recommendations thereon;

That the Committee have power to send for persons, papers and records, to sit notwithstanding any adjournment of the House; to adjourn from place to place; to report from time to time and to appoint specialist advisers;

[The next paragraph contains the names of the Members]

That this Order be a Standing Order of the House until the end of the present Parliament.

Liaison Committee (Membership)
5th November 2001

(as in force following re-naming of the Deregulation and Regulatory Reform Committee as the Regulatory Reform Committee on 14th May 2002 and amendments of 22nd July 2002 and 27th January and 11th September 2003)

Ordered, That—

(1) With effect for the current Parliament, notwithstanding Standing Order No. 121 (Nomination of select committees), the Chairman for the time being of each of the Select Committees listed in paragraph (2) below shall be a member of the Liaison Committee;

(2) The Committees to which paragraph (1) above applies are:

Accommodation and Works
Administration
Broadcasting
Catering
Constitutional Affairs
Culture, Media and Sport
Defence
Education and Skills
Environmental Audit
Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
European Scrutiny
Finance and Services
Foreign Affairs
Health
Home Affairs
Joint Committee on Human Rights
  (the Chairman being a Member of this House)
Information
International Development
Northern Ireland Affairs
Office of the Deputy Prime Minister: Housing, Planning,
Local Government and the Regions
Procedure
Public Accounts
Public Administration
Regulatory Reform
Science and Technology
Scottish Affairs
Selection
Standards and Privileges
Statutory Instruments
Trade and Industry
Transport
Treasury
Welsh Affairs
Work and Pensions;


and

(3) Mr Alan Williams and Mr Richard Allan shall also be Members of the Liaison Committee.

Joint Activities with the National Assembly for Wales7th June 2004 for remainder of present Parliament

The Welsh Affairs Committee may invite members of any specified committee of the National Assembly for Wales to attend and participate in its proceedings (but not to vote).

Shorter speeches
26th October 2004 for next two sessions

The Speaker may call Members between certain hours to speak for a specified maximum time (not being less than three minutes) and during this time the reference to eight minutes in paragraph (1) of Standing Order No. 47 (Short speeches) and the provisions of paragraph (2) of that order shall not apply.



1  
For the effect of this Order, see the Table on page xvi. The House made a separate Order for Tuesdays in the same terms as for Wednesdays in paragraphs (1) to (3) of this Order (except paragraph (1)(c)): the two Orders have been combined for ease of reference. Back


 
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Prepared 23 November 2004