HC Deb 08 September 1909 vol 10 cc1310-2

May I in the first place ask the Prime Minister if he can give us any view of the Government's intention with regard to business in the course of next week? I put the question to-day rather than on Thursday because it is very convenient, especially at this time, to have full notice as soon as possible of the way the Government intend to proceed. Then may I ask another question on a matter of great public importance. As he is aware, the Development Grant Bill has now gone to Grand Committee. I think at the time he was giving us the statement known as the "slaughter of the innocents" he implied if that Bill was controversial—I do not wish to impute any breach of faith, but he certainly used language which by ordinary Parliamentary methods of interpretation would be understood as indication that that was not a Bill that the Government intended to press if it excited much Debate. Whatever its second reading merits may be, I think the Government will admit it is a Bill that ought to be most carefully discussed in Grand Committee, and the appeal I wish to make to him is if he intends—really intends—to proceed with the Bill that he should so arrange the days on which the Grand Committee sit in relation to the days on which the Budget is taken, so as to make it possible for Members interested in both those important measures to take some part in them. I think he will feel that is not an unreasonable request to make at the present time. Those are the two points.


Would the right hon. Gentleman say whether it is the intention of the Government to take at an early date the Resolutions in regard to Mineral Duties that appear every day on the Paper? It would be a great convenience to know if they are going to take them at an early date.


As regards the business for next week, we propose to take on

Monday and Tuesday, Finance Bill (Committee);

Wednesday and Thursday, Irish Land Bill (Report);

Friday, Irish Land Bill (Third Reading).

With regard to the Standing Committee on the Development Fund Bill, perhaps the right hon. Gentleman will repeat the question to-morrow. Upon the question of the hon. Member for Ashford (Mr. L. Hardy), I will consult with the Chancellor of the Exchequer.


In reference to the Bill of which notice appears on to-day's Paper (Places of Worship) (Enfranchisement), may I ask whether its appearance indicates any hope of its being passed? The right hon. Gentleman will recollect that the Enfranchisement of Places of Worship Bill and the Bishopric of Sheffield Bill were more or less dependent on one another.


I am anxious that both Bills should go through. I am afraid their fortunes are somewhat intertwined, and there must be some arrangement between the promoters of both if either is to go forward.