§ THE PAYMASTER GENERAL (LORD SHACKLETON)
My Lords, in rising to move the Motion standing in my name on the Order Paper, I should perhaps just say that the purpose of these two Amendments to the Standing Orders of the House is to give effect to paragraph 2 of the First Report from the Procedure Committee made on April 3. The Committee recommended that Standing Order No. 35 (Arrangement of the Order Paper) be amended so that Special Orders would be given the same precedence on the Order Paper as Public Bills and Measures. This Report was agreed to by the House on April 10. If your Lordships accept the two Amendments standing in my name, the effect will be that Special Orders will lose their present position on the Order Paper which allows them to come before Public Bills.
Until the war, the great majority of Special Orders were of a Private Bill nature, and it was therefore logical for them to be given the same precedence as Private Bills. Since the war, however, the vast majority of Special Orders have been of a Public Bill nature and it seemed logical to the Committee to class them with such Bills on the Order Paper. Perhaps I should add that I hope these Amendments will enable Special Orders to be set down with rather greater flexibility than hitherto, and that this will prove to be for the convenience of the House. I beg to move.
§ Moved, That the following Amendments be made to Standing Order No. 35:
§ Paragraph 4, line 3, after ("orders") insert ("(other than Special Orders)")
§ Paragraph 5, lines 2 and 3, leave out ("and Measures") and insert ("Measures and Special Orders")
§ Paragraph 5, line 6, leave out ("and Measures") and insert ("Measures and Special Orders").—(Lord Shackleton.)
§ On Question, Motion agreed to: the said Standing Order amended accordingly.