HC Deb 22 March 1988 vol 130 cc243-4

'— (1) The persons to whom section 1 of the Superannuation Act 1972 applies (persons to or in respect of whom benefits may be provided by schemes under that section) shall include—

  1. (a) persons who at any time after the coming into force of this section are serving in employment with the company formed and registered under the Companies Act 1948 and known at the passing of this Act as the Further Education Unit; and
  2. (b) persons who at any time before the passing of this Act have ceased to serve in employment with that company;
and accordingly a reference to that company shall be inserted at the appropriate point in the alphabetical list of "Other Bodies" in Schedule 1 to that Act. (2) That company shall pay to the Treasury, at such times as the Treasury may direct, such sums as the Treasury may determine in respect of the increase attributable to this section in the sums payable out of money provided by Parliament under that Act.'.—[Mr. Kenneth Baker.]

Brought up, read the First and Second time, and added to the Bill.

Mr. Andrew F. Bennett

On a point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker. Last night there was an extension of the money resolution in order to deal with the question of student grants. We had the odd procedure whereby the Minister of State did not tell the House what it was about. The hon. Lady chose to move the resolution formally and to wind up the debate, and, skilfully, she ran out of time and failed to answer the question put by my hon. Friend the Member for Leeds, Central (Mr. Fatchett) and the hon. Member for Yeovil (Mr. Ashdown). Interestingly, the Government chose not to tell us what it was all about.

If one considers the opening speech and reply of the Secretary of State, it seems that he has again skilfully avoided the new clauses in question being debated. I wonder, Mr. Deputy Speaker, whether you would give consideration, in selecting amendments at a later stage, as to whether it would be possible for us to return to the issue of student grants, because there is a suspicion among Opposition Members that the Government have moved amendments that have given them the opportunity to pave the way for student loans and we would want to pursue that issue.

I know that you cannot commit yourself on future selection, but I hope that you will bear that in mind. We are extremely suspicious that the Government have deliberately contrived the business so as to avoid there being an opportunity for us to probe that issue.

Mr. Flannery

Further to that point of order, Mr. Deputy Speaker. I agree with what was said by my hon. Friend the Member for Denton and Reddish (Mr. Bennett). There are 13 new clauses tabled in this group and, because of the guillotine, we have discussed only two. Therefore, all the others—this needs to be placed on the record—are not discussed. That is what has happened and it seems to be a terrible violation of democracy.

Mr. Deputy Speaker

I am bound by the resolution of the House. However, I shall discuss with Mr. Speaker the point that has been made with regard to the selections for further days. As the House knows, Mr. Speaker has not yet made his selections for the remaining days of consideration of the Bill.

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