HL Deb 18 August 1919 vol 36 cc1013-6

My Lords, it has been the practice of your Lordships' House at this time of the session to make such alterations in the Standing Orders as may be found to be necessary by public legislation. Those I have put on the Paper are mainly of a verbal character, in order to bring the Standing Orders into line with existing legislation, and though perhaps rather formidable in number they are in fact quite simple.

The Amendments proposed are under three heads. Those under Head I are for the purpose of removing front the Standing Orders the references to Scotland so far as they are rendered unnecessary by Standing Order No. 188. Under the Private Legislation Procedure (Scotland) Act all applications for Parliamentary powers in Scotland must originate in the form of Provisional Orders, and these have to comply with the General Orders under that Act, which cover the same ground as the Standing Orders and in fact follow their provisions. It is true that the two Chairmen may require any of these Draft Orders to be converted into a Bill, if for any of the reasons laid down by the Act they think the matter should be dealt with directly by Parliament. But in those cases the Act and Standing Order No. 188 provide that compliance with the General Orders renders compliance with Standing Orders unnecessary. The Amendments which I propose have been approved by the Secretary for Scotland, and I understand that Amendments for a similar purpose will be proposed to the Standing Orders of the House of Commons.

Under Head II the Ministry of Health is substituted for the Local Government Board, in accordance with the recent Act. Under Head III are some miscellaneous Amendments. In Standing Order No. 4 the present local government areas are substituted for "parishes, townlands," etc. Standing Order No. 38 now applies only to Ireland, the matter being now provided for England and Scotland by public Acts of 1903 and 1909. Standing Orders No. 69 and 69D deal with the Money Bills of the London County Council. Order No. 69 provides that these Bills are to be Public Bills unless certain conditions are complied with; but under the Consolidation Act of 1912 all such Money Bills are now introduced as Private Bills, and the Standing Orders as proposed to be amended give effect to the existing Orders so far as they are not already law under the Act of 1912.

Standing Order No. 91, as it now stands, gives an interval of only fourteen days between First and Second Reading of Bills which require Wharncliffe meetings. The result is that in the case of the railway companies, whose general meetings are usually held in March, the Wharncliffe meetings must be held separately and before the General Meeting, and this involves the companies in the considerable expense of circularising their shareholders twice over. The extension of the period to twenty-eight days will enable the companies to hold their Wharncliffe meetings and the General Meeting on the same day and summoned by means of the same circulars. As to Standing Order No. 111, this Amendment is consequential upon the Amendment of Standing Order No. 38. I beg to move.

Moved, that the Standing Orders relative to Private Bills be amended as follows:

I. 4. Leave out "and sheriff clerks."
9. Leave out "Edinburgh."
14. Leave out "and sheriff clerks as the case may be."
22. Leave out "and Scotland."
24. Leave out from "Ireland" to "in or through."
26B. Leave out paragraph (1).
27. Leave out "or sheriff clerk."
29. Leave out paragraphs (e) and (f).

I. 33. In paragraph (3) leave out "Scotland or," "office of the Secretary for Scotland or the" and "as the case may be."
In paragraph (11) leave out "Scotland."
In paragraph (12) after "drainage" insert "or improvement" and leave out "or which relates to the improvement of land in England, Wales or Scotland," and leave out "the United Kingdom" and insert "England, Wales or Ireland."
57. Leave out "or the Court of Exchequer in Scotland if the work is intended to be done in Scotland."
61. Leave out from "Ireland" to "and that a copy," and leave out" Edinburgh."
62. Leave out Edinburgh."
111. Leave out "in Scotland or."
146. Leave out "sheriff clerks" and "or sheriff clerk."
Appendix. Form (A). Leave out "or principal sheriff clerks, as the case may be "and [section 90 of the Lands Clauses Consolidation (Scotland) Act, 1845]."
II. In Standing Orders 25c, 33, 36A and 134, leave out Local Government Board," and insert "Ministry of Health."
III. 4. Leave out "parishes, townlands, and extra-parochial places" and insert boroughs, urban and rural districts and, in the case of rural districts, the parishes," and at the end of the order insert "The provisions of this order relating to boroughs shall apply in the case of London to metropolitan boroughs and the City of London."
38. Leave out "local area as defined for the purposes of this Order" and insert "urban district in Ireland."
Leave out "Central Authority" where these words first occur and insert "Local Government Board for Ireland."
Leave out so much of the Order as defines "local area" and "Central Authority."
69 and 69A. Leave out 69 and 69A.
69B. Leave out from the beginning to "shall be subject" and insert "69. Every annual Money Bill of the London County Council promoted in accordance with the London County Council (Finance Consolidation) Act, 1912, or any Act amending the same, shall contain only powers or provisions relating to the borrowing, lending, and expenditure of money and."
Leave out "and the Local Government Board."
After 69B insert the following new Order:
"69A. Where any Act has conferred upon the London County Council any power
involving the expenditure of money for any purpose, or has extended such power, it shall not be competent for the Committee on any Annual Money Bill of the London County Council authorising the borrowing and expenditure of money for the same purpose, except in pursuance of an express instruction from this House, to reduce the total amount of money shown by the estimates recited in such Act to be required for the execution of the power."
III. 69D. Leave out 69D.
91. Leave out "fourteenth" and insert "twenty-eighth."
111. Leave out "Central Authority" wherever it occurs and insert "Local Government Board for Ireland."

—(The Earl of Kintore.)

On Question, Motion agreed to.