HC Deb 15 December 1987 vol 124 cc1039-43

Order for Third Reading read.

11.27 pm
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Environment (Mr. Christopher Chope)

I beg to move, That the Bill be now read the Third time.

This was the first Bill to receive a Second Reading in this Parliament. It will not be the first to receive its Third Reading and that is because we had 100 hours deliberating it in detail in Committee in 29 sittings. That was a thorough consideration of the Bill.

The two main provisions of the Bill concern compulsory competitive tendering and the outlawing of anti-competitive contract compliance clauses. It is significant that both those subjects were the subject of early day motions supported by many of my hon. Friends in the previous Parliament.

It is the Government's established policy to ensure that we obtain better value for money in local government. The Bill will facilitate that and it deserves the strong and enthusiastic support of the House.

11.29 pm
Dr. John Cunningham (Copeland)

This may not be the first Bill to receive its Third Reading in this Parliament—[Interruption.]

Mr. Speaker


Dr. Cunningham


Mr. Speaker

Order. I suspend the sitting for five minutes while the Strangers' Gallery is cleared.

Sitting suspended at 11.30 pm.

11.35 pm
Mr. Speaker

resumed the Chair.

Dr. Cunningham

The Under-Secretary of State said that this was the first Bill to complete its stages in the House this session. There will be few Bills more obnoxious than this one. It takes powers away from local authorities, it curbs their rights to use the media, it supports the Fascist apartheid regime in South Africa. [Interruption.] The Bill specifically brings aid and comfort to the apartheid regime in South Africa. It has the unique distinction of undermining civil rights abroad and doing exactly the same at home. Few Bills going through the House have that unique obnoxious facet. We are totally opposed to all its aspects, and we will divide the House on Third Reading.

Mr. Simon Hughes

I endorse what the hon. Member for Copeland (Dr. Cunningham) has said. there are four parts to the Bill, all of which are equally unacceptable to these Benches. We oppose competitive tendering being compulsorily imposed on local government, not because it is bad, but because the Government are compelling local authorities to do it according to the Government's wish. Hon. Members are not alone in opposing that aspect of the Bill, because competitive tendering is opposed by all the organisations of local government outside the House. It is also opposed by the Audit Commission, by academics and around the land.

The Minister said in relation to previous debates this evening that we are all against discrimination, yet it is clear in part II that the Government are prepared to countenance discrimination at home in relation to those with disabilities, ethnic minorities and women, and abroad particularly in relation to South Africa. By preventing local authorities from taking a moral stand on South Africa the Government have declared their true intentions and true colours and their willingness to sustain that regime.

On housing, the Government are preventing schemes that should have been able to go ahead, and they are preventing local authorities from being able to sell properties to housing associations at a reasonable price.

In the last part of the Bill the Government are adding to restrictions on local authority publicity, for which they have given no justification. Tonight they have evidenced their clear prejudice on matters of discrimination in relation to homosexuals and homosexuality, and, to cap it all, they are even to abolish the dog licence.

The Bill should be rejected. It enshrines more selfishness in the law of the land and confirms the dogma and prejudice for which the Government will be particularly remembered. Their morality is not the morality of the Opposition or of the country. The Bill must be resisted, and I hope that it will be defeated before it completes its passage through the House.

Question put, That the Bill be now read the Third time:—

The House divided: Ayes 308, Noes 215.

Division No. 119] [11.40 pm
Adley, Robert Budgen, Nicholas
Alison, Rt Hon Michael Burns, Simon
Allason, Rupert Burt, Alistair
Amess, David Butler, Chris
Amos, Alan Butterfill, John
Arbuthnot, James Carlisle, John, (Luton N)
Arnold, Jacques (Gravesham) Carlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln)
Arnold, Tom (Hazel Grove) Carrington, Matthew
Ashby, David Carttiss, Michael
Aspinwall, Jack Cash, William
Atkins, Robert Channon, Rt Hon Paul
Atkinson, David Chope, Christopher
Baker, Rt Hon K. (Mole Valley) Clark, Hon Alan (Plym'th S'n)
Baker, Nicholas (Dorset N) Clark, Dr Michael (Rochford)
Baldry, Tony Clark, Sir W. (Croydon S)
Banks, Robert (Harrogate) Clarke, Rt Hon K. (Rushcliffe)
Batiste, Spencer Colvin, Michael
Beaumont-Dark, Anthony Conway, Derek
Bellingham, Henry Coombs, Simon (Swindon)
Bendall, Vivian Cope, John
Bennett, Nicholas (Pembroke) Cormack, Patrick
Benyon, W. Couchman, James
Bevan, David Gilroy Cran, James
Bitten, Rt Hon John Currie, Mrs Edwina
Blackburn, Dr John G. Davies, Q. (Stamf'd & Spald'g)
Blaker, Rt Hon Sir Peter Davis, David (Boothferry)
Body, Sir Richard Day, Stephen
Bonsor, Sir Nicholas Devlin, Tim
Boswell, Tim Dickens, Geoffrey
Bottomley, Peter Dorrell, Stephen
Bottomley, Mrs Virginia Douglas-Hamilton, Lord James
Bowden, A (Brighton K'pto'n) Dover, Den
Bowden, Gerald (Dulwich) Dunn, Bob
Bowis, John Durant, Tony
Boyson, Rt Hon Dr Sir Rhodes Eggar, Tim
Braine, Rt Hon Sir Bernard Emery, Sir Peter
Brandon-Bravo, Martin Evans, David (Welwyn Hatf'd)
Brazier, Julian Fallon, Michael
Bright, Graham Farr, Sir John
Brooke, Hon Peter Fenner, Dame Peggy
Brown, Michael (Brigg & Cl't's) Field, Barry (Isle of Wight)
Browne, John (Winchester) Finsberg, Sir Geoffrey
Bruce, Ian (Dorset South) Fookes, Miss Janet
Buchanan-Smith, Rt Hon Alick Forman, Nigel
Forth, Eric Lord, Michael
Fowler, Rt Hon Norman Lyell, Sir Nicholas
Fox, Sir Marcus Macfarlane, Neil
Freeman, Roger MacKay, Andrew (E Berkshire)
French, Douglas Maclean, David
Fry, Peter McLoughlin, Patrick
Gale, Roger McNair-Wilson, M. (Newbury)
Gardiner, George McNair-Wilson, P. (New Forest)
Gill, Christopher Major, Rt Hon John
Glyn, Dr Alan Malins, Humfrey
Goodhart, Sir Philip Mans, Keith
Goodson-Wickes, Dr Charles Maples, John
Gorman, Mrs Teresa Marland, Paul
Gow, Ian Marlow, Tony
Gower, Sir Raymond Martin, David (Portsmouth S)
Grant, Sir Anthony (CambsSW) Maude, Hon Francis
Greenway, Harry (Ealing N) Maxwell-Hyslop, Robin
Greenway, John (Rydale) Mayhew, Rt Hon Sir Patrick
Gregory, Conal Mellor, David
Griffiths, Peter (Portsmouth N) Meyer, Sir Anthony
Grist, Ian Miller, Hal
Ground, Patrick Mills, Iain
Grylls, Michael Mitchell, Andrew (Gedling)
Hamilton, Hon A. (Epsom) Mitchell, David (Hants NW)
Hamilton, Neil (Tatton) Monro, Sir Hector
Hampson, Dr Keith Montgomery, Sir Fergus
Hanley, Jeremy Morris, M (N'hampton S)
Hannam, John Morrison, Hon C. (Devizes)
Hargreaves, A. (B'ham H'll Gr') Morrison, Hon P (Chester)
Hargreaves, Ken (Hyndburn) Moss, Malcolm
Harris, David Moynihan, Hon C.
Hawkins, Christopher Mudd, David
Hayes, Jerry Neale, Gerrard
Hayward, Robert Nelson, Anthony
Heathcoat-Amory, David Neubert, Michael
Heddle, John Newton, Tony
Heseltine, Rt Hon Michael Nicholls, Patrick
Hicks, Robert (Cornwall SE) Nicholson, David (Taunton)
Higgins, Rt Hon Terence L. Nicholson, Miss E. (Devon W)
Hill, James Onslow, Cranley
Hind, Kenneth Oppenheim, Phillip
Hogg, Hon Douglas (Gr'th'm) Page, Richard
Holt, Richard Paice, James
Hordern, Sir Peter Patnick, Irvine
Howard, Michael Patten, Chris (Bath)
Howarth, Alan (Strat'd-on-A) Patten, John (Oxford W)
Howarth, G. (Cannock & B'wd) Pawsey, James
Howell, Rt Hon David (G'dford) Peacock, Mrs Elizabeth
Hughes, Robert G. (Harrow W) Porter, Barry (Wirral S)
Hunt, David (Wirral W) Porter, David (Waveney)
Hunt, John (Ravensbourne) Portillo, Michael
Hurd, Rt Hon Douglas Powell, William (Corby)
Irvine, Michael Price, Sir David
Jack, Michael Raffan, Keith
Jackson, Robert Raison, Rt Hon Timothy
Janman, Timothy Rathbone, Tim
Jessel, Toby Redwood, John
Johnson Smith, Sir Geoffrey Rhodes James, Robert
Jones, Gwilym (Cardiff N) Rhys Williams, Sir Brandon
Jones, Robert B (Herts W) Riddick, Graham
Kellett-Bowman, Mrs Elaine Ridley, Rt Hon Nicholas
Key, Robert Ridsdale, Sir Julian
Kilfedder, James Roberts, Wyn (Conwy)
King, Roger (B'ham N'thfield) Roe, Mrs Marion
Kirkhope, Timothy Rossi, Sir Hugh
Knapman, Roger Rost, Peter
Knight, Greg (Derby North) Rumbold, Mrs Angela
Knight, Dame Jill (Edgbaston) Ryder, Richard
Knowles, Michael Sackville, Hon Tom
Knox, David Sainsbury, Hon Tim
Lamont, Rt Hon Norman Scott, Nicholas
Lang, Ian Shaw, David (Dover)
Latham, Michael Shaw, Sir Giles (Pudsey)
Lawrence, Ivan Shelton, William (Streatham)
Lee, John (Pendle) Shephard, Mrs G. (Norfolk SW)
Lennox-Boyd, Hon Mark Shepherd, Colin (Hereford)
Lightbown, David Shepherd, Richard (Aldridge)
Lilley, Peter Shersby, Michael
Lloyd, Sir Ian (Havant) Sims, Roger
Lloyd, Peter (Fareham) Skeet, Sir Trevor
Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick) Trippier, David
Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield) Trotter, Neville
Soames, Hon Nicholas Twinn, Dr Ian
Speed, Keith Vaughan, Sir Gerard
Speller, Tony Waddington, Rt Hon David
Spicer, Jim (Dorset W) Wakeham, Rt Hon John
Spicer, Michael (S Worcs) Waldegrave, Hon William
Squire, Robin Walden, George
Stanbrook, Ivor Walker, Bill (T'side North)
Steen, Anthony Walker, Rt Hon P. (W'cester)
Stern, Michael Waller, Gary
Stevens, Lewis Walters, Dennis
Stewart, Andrew (Sherwood) Ward, John
Stewart, Ian (Hertfordshire N) Wardle, C. (Bexhill)
Stradling Thomas, Sir John Warren, Kenneth
Sumberg, David Watts, John
Summerson, Hugo Wells, Bowen
Tapsell, Sir Peter Wheeler, John
Taylor, Ian (Esher) Whitney, Ray
Taylor, John M (Solihull) Widdecombe, Miss Ann
Taylor, Teddy (S'end E) Wiggin, Jerry
Tebbit, Rt Hon Norman Wilshire, David
Temple-Morris, Peter Winterton, Mrs Ann
Thompson, D. (Calder Valley) Wolfson, Mark
Thompson, Patrick (Norwich N) Wood, Timothy
Thorne, Neil Woodcock, Mike
Thornton, Malcolm Yeo, Tim
Thurnham, Peter Younger, Rt Hon George
Townend, John (Bridlington)
Townsend, Cyril D. (B'heath) Tellers for the Ayes:
Tracey, Richard Mr. Robert Boscawen and
Tredinnick, David Mr. Tristan Garel-Jones.
Abbott, Ms Diane Cummings, J.
Adams, Allen (Paisley N) Cunliffe, Lawrence
Allen, Graham Cunningham, Dr John
Alton, David Dalyell, Tam
Anderson, Donald Darling, Alastair
Archer, Rt Hon Peter Davies, Ron (Caerphilly)
Armstrong, Ms Hilary Davis, Terry (B'ham Hodge H'I)
Ashdown, Paddy Dixon, Don
Ashley, Rt Hon Jack Dobson, Frank
Ashton, Joe Doran, Frank
Banks, Tony (Newham NW) Dunwoody, Hon Mrs Gwyneth
Barnes, Harry (Derbyshire NE) Eadie, Alexander
Barron, Kevin Eastham, Ken
Battle, John Evans, John (St Helens N)
Beckett, Margaret Ewing, Harry (Falkirk E)
Benn, Rt Hon Tony Ewing, Mrs Margaret (Moray)
Bennett, A. F. (D'nt'n & R'dish) Fatchett, Derek
Bermingham, Gerald Fearn, Ronald
Blair, Tony Field, Frank (Birkenhead)
Boateng, Paul Fields, Terry (L'pool B G'n)
Boyes, Roland Flannery, Martin
Bradley, Keith Flynn, Paul
Bray, Dr Jeremy Foot, Rt Hon Michael
Brown, Gordon (D'mline E) Foster, Derek
Brown, Nicholas (Newcastle E) Foulkes, George
Brown, Ron (Edinburgh Leith) Fraser, John
Buchan, Norman Fyfe, Mrs Maria
Buckley, George Galbraith, Samuel
Caborn, Richard Galloway, George
Callaghan, Jim Garrett, John (Norwich South)
Campbell, Ron (Blyth Valley) George, Bruce
Campbell-Savours, D. N. Gilbert, Rt Hon Dr John
Carlile, Alex (Mont'g) Godman, Dr Norman A.
Clark, Dr David (S Shields) Golding, Mrs Llin
Clarke, Tom (Monklands W) Gordon, Ms Mildred
Clay, Bob Gould, Bryan
Clelland, David Grant, Bernie (Tottenham)
Clwyd, Mrs Ann Griffiths, Nigel (Edinburgh S)
Cohen, Harry Griffiths, Win (Bridgend)
Coleman, Donald Grocott, Bruce
Cook, Robin (Livingston) Hardy, Peter
Corbett, Robin Harman, Ms Harriet
Corbyn, Jeremy Hattersley, Rt Hon Roy
Cousins, Jim Healey, Rt Hon Denis
Cox, Tom Heffer, Eric S.
Cryer, Bob Henderson, Douglas
Hinchliffe, David O'Brien, William
Hogg, N. (C'nauld & Kilsyth) O'Neill, Martin
Home Robertson, John Orme, Rt Hon Stanley
Hood, James Parry, Robert
Howarth, George (Knowslay N) Patchett, Terry
Howell, Rt Hon D. (S'heath) Pendry, Tom
Howells, Geraint Pike, Peter
Hoyle, Doug Powell, Ray (Ogmore)
Hughes, Robert (Aberdeen N) Primarolo, Ms Dawn
Hughes, Roy (Newport E) Quin, Ms Joyce
Hughes, Sean (Knowsley S) Radice, Giles
Hughes, Simon (Southwark) Randall, Stuart
Illsley, Eric Redmond, Martin
Ingram, Adam Rees, Rt Hon Merlyn
Janner, Greville Reid, John
Jones, Barry (Alyn & Deeside) Richardson, Ms Jo
Jones, leuan (Ynys Môn) Roberts, Allan (Bootle)
Jones, Martyn (Clwyd S W) Robinson, Geoffrey
Kennedy, Charles Rogers, Allan
Kinnock, Rt Hon Neil Rooker, Jeff
Kirkwood, Archy Ross, Ernie (Dundee W)
Lambie, David Rowlands, Ted
Lamond, James Ruddock, Ms Joan
Leighton, Ron Sedgemore, Brian
Lestor, Miss Joan (Eccles) Sheerman, Barry
Lewis, Terry Sheldon, Rt Hon Robert
Litherland, Robert Shore, Rt Hon Peter
Livingstone, Ken Short, Clare
Livsey, Richard Skinner, Dennis
Lloyd, Tony (Stratford) Smith, Andrew (Oxford E)
Lofthouse, Geoffrey Smith, C. (Isl'ton & F'bury)
Loyden, Eddie Smith, Rt Hon J. (Monk'ds E)
McAllion, John Soley, Clive
McAvoy, Tom Spearing, Nigel
McCartney, Ian Steel, Rt Hon David
Macdonald, Calum Steinberg, Gerald
McFall, John Stott, Roger
McKay, Allen (Penistone) Strang, Gavin
McKelvey, William Straw, Jack
McLeish, Henry Taylor, Mrs Ann (Dewsbury)
McTaggart, Bob Taylor, Matthew (Truro)
Madden, Max Thomas, Dafydd Elis
Mahon, Mrs Alice Turner, Dennis
Marek, Dr John Wall, Pat
Marshall, David (Shettleston) Wallace, James
Marshall, Jim (Leicester S) Walley, Ms Joan
Martin, Michael (Springburn) Wardell, Gareth (Gower)
Martlew, Eric Wareing, Robert N.
Maxton, John Welsh, Andrew (Angus E)
Meacher, Michael Welsh, Michael (Doncaster N)
Meale, Alan Wigley, Dafydd
Michael, Alun Williams, Rt Hon A. J.
Michie, Bill (Sheffield Heeley) Williams, Alan W. (Carm'then)
Millan, Rt Hon Bruce Wilson, Brian
Moonie, Dr Lewis Winnick, David
Morgan, Rhodri Wise, Mrs Audrey
Morley, Elliott Worthington, Anthony
Morris, Rt Hon A (W'shawe) Wray, James
Morris, Rt Hon J (Aberavon) Young, David (Bolton SE)
Mowlam, Mrs Marjorie
Mullin, Chris Tellers for the Noes:
Murphy, Paul Mr. Frank Haynes and
Nellist, Dave Mr. Frank Cook.
Oakes, Rt Hon Gordon

Question accordingly agreed to.

Bill read the Third time, and passed.