HL Deb 19 December 1919 vol 38 cc477-8

My Lords, the noble Earl the Leader of the House and the noble Earl the Chancellor of the Duchy are unavoidably prevented by public duties from being here, and it has fallen to me to inform your Lordships that it will be necessary for us on Monday to consider a Bill that has not yet been mentioned in this House. When the Chancellor of the Duchy was explaining to your Lordships what further measures you would be called upon to discuss before Parliament was prorogued, I think that the only one, apart from those that had already been considered by your Lordships, was the Bill for the continuance of the restrictions on profiteering which your Lordships have just passed. But the Cabinet have decided that a Bill for the increase of old-age pensions must be brought before Parliament before the Prorogation, and that is being considered in another place to-day. It will, therefore, be necessary for your Lordships if the Bill passes, as we may suppose it will, in another place, to pass it through all its stages in this House on Monday. There is also the Motion which stands in the name of the noble Viscount, Lord Bryce, on Monday.


The noble Lord has made a very clear statement as to what the intention of the Government is with regard to the necessity of passing this additional measure before the Prorogation of Parliament. It would be purposeless, I think, to attempt to discuss their possible reasons for thinking it necessary to take that course. I am not sure whether the Bill in question is technically a Money Bill or not, but at any rate it is one which, so far as the supply of money is concerned, concerns another place more than it does us. Nor do I know whether or not your Lordships desire to make it a subject of some discussion; or whether it will pass by agreement with little or no discussion. But that fact being uncertain, I should hope that the Government would agree to take on Monday the Motion of my noble friend Lord Bryce before this Bill The Motion of the noble Viscount is one to which I know His Majesty's Government attach great importance, as do we on this side of the House. And conceiving it to be possible that the Old Age Pensions (Increase) Bill


May I interrupt the noble Marquess to say that I know it is the intention of the Leader of the House that the Motion of Lord Bryce should be taken as the first Order on Monday.


Then I need not pursue that subject. I am obliged to the noble Lord for the information he has given us.


The noble Lord did not mention the Land Settlement (Scotland) Bill. Do I understand that the Commons have agreed to the Lords Amendments?


I have not yet had any intimation to that effect; but, of course, that matter will have to be discussed on Monday also.


I understand that the Old Age Pensions Bill is almost on its way from the House of Commons to this House. In that case, those of your Lordships who may care to wait might do so in order that we may take the first stage of that measure this afternoon.


Hear, hear.

House adjourned during pleasure.

House resumed.