HC Deb 11 July 1905 vol 149 cc271-2
MR. LOUGH (Islington, W.)

asked the Chairman of the Committee of Selection whether the Committee appointed to consider the Bill of the Administrative County of London and District Electric Power Company were nominated and the Members advised of their selection before the Second Reading of the Bill; whether his attention had been called to the fact that two of the hon. Members so nominated afterwards voted in favour of the Second Reading of the Bill, and whether the Committee of Selection had received an intimation from one other Member that he was financially interested in the scheme, and whether, in the circumstances, the Committee of Selection proposed to take any further steps with regard to the formation of this Committee.

MR. HALSEY (Hertfordshire, Watford)

replied that the Committee wore appointed provisionally by the Committee of Selection before the Second Reading of the Bill, but the names were not announced until after the Second Reading. This was done with the object of allowing the Committee to meet at the earliest possible moment, which, in view of the importance of the Bill and the lateness of the session, was thought desirable. It was not unusual to appoint a Committee to sit on a group of Bills some of which had not been read a second time. He was aware that two Members voted in favour of the Bill being read a second time; but it had never been held that a Member voting in favour of a Bill going to a Committee should be in consequence unable to sit as a member of the Committee on the Bill, though, naturally, a Member having voted against the Second Reading would not be eligible. No Member would be able to sit on the Committee who had not first sign d the declaration stating that neither he nor his constituents had any personal or local interest in the Bill referred to them.


said the right hon. Gentleman had not answered that part of his Question in which he asked whether any communication had been received from one of the Members nominated.


said that was not so. One of the Members who were originally nominated on the Committee had asked to be excused, not on that ground, but on private and personal grounds. He had not received any intimation from; any of the hon. Members that he was I financially interested in the scheme.

MR. BOULNOIS (Marylebone, E.)

asked whether the hon. Members named by the Selection Committee knew that they had been nominated before the Second Reading of the Bill.


said he was not quite sure of that. The hon. Member who had been appointed Chairman of the Committee was aware that he would be nominated and that it was proposed to appoint him the Chairman, but he was not quite certain about the other Members.


asked the Speaker whether he thought it was desirable that members of a Committee of this kind, dealing with such an important matter, should pledge themselves by voting on the Second Reading of the Bill which was to be referred to them.


I think that is not I a Question that comes within my jurisdiction. I may have my own private views with regard to it, but it is not for me to impose them on the House.

MR. RUTHERFORD (Lancashire, Darwen)

desired to state, as one of the Members nominated, that he knew nothing about his nomination when the Second Reading of the Bill was voted upon.

SIR J. STIRLING-MAXWELL (Glasgow, College)

said he was asked whether he could serve on the Committee before the Second Reading, and in spite of that he voted in the division. It never occurred to him to do otherwise, for he could not conceive how his action on the Committee could be affected by his voting for the Second Reading.

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