HC Deb 11 July 1984 vol 63 c1053 4.36 pm
Mr. Robin Maxwell-Hyslop (Tiverton)

On a point of order, Mr. Speaker. You were good enough to place in the No Lobby your provisional selection of amendments on the Finance (No. 2) Bill. It is unfortunate that, although yesterday I handed in to the Public Bill Office an accurate, carefully .typed — not scribbled on the back of an envelope — important new clause, it has appeared on page 2295 of the notice paper in a form so garbled that you could not have selected it. It is a starred amendment, because it concerns a declaratory new clause which would put income tax or capital gains tax outside the outgoers' scheme payments which are to be made by the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food to those milk producers who have to leave milk production because of the imposition of the quota scheme.

I could not sensibly table such a new clause until I knew whether my right hon. Friend would make those payments tax exempt. I sat through the debate on the draft regulations, and was not called because more hon. Members sought to catch your eye, Mr. Speaker, than you could call. I immediately wrote to my right hon. Friend asking him to give tax exempt status to payments under the outgoers' scheme. Because by yesterday I had received no reply from the Minister—the reply came by messenger only at midday today—I waited as late as I reasonably could before handing in the important new clause.

I handed in the new clause in the following form: Outgoers' Scheme Mr. Robin Maxwell-Hyslop To move the following Clause:— 'Monies paid by the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food under the "Outgoers' Scheme" announced on 25th May 1984 to registered milk producers who enter into an agreement with the Minister pursuant to that scheme shall not be liable for income tax or capital gains tax.'. The word "or" has been omitted by the printer; a bracket has been placed after the word "Scheme" and the word "Outgoers" in the heading has been put in the singular. All those details were correct in the typed form that I handed in. I am not surprised, Mr. Speaker, that, because of the form in which the new clause appears on the notice paper, you felt unable to select it. However, it is such a crucial new clause to a large, number of people whose livelihood is affected that I would, with the greatest respect, in view of the misprints, ask you, Mr. Speaker, whether you would be good enough to include it in your actual as opposed to provisional selection of amendments.

Sir Peter Mills (Torridge and Devon, West)

I strongly support my hon. Friend the Member for Tiverton (Mr. Maxwell-Hyslop). He showed me the typed piece of paper with the new clause on it before he tabled it. I support him fully .

Mr. Speaker

Order. I was concerned not so much with the way in which the new clause was presented, but with the fact that it was starred, which caused me not to select it. However, in view of what the hon. Members for Tiverton (Mr. Maxwell-Hyslop) and for Torridge and Devon, West (Sir. P. Mills) have said, I shall look into the matter. I shall make an announcement later.

Mr. Maxwell-Hyslop

I am most grateful, Mr. Speaker.