HC Deb 09 May 1957 vol 569 cc85-6W
51. Mr. Mitchison

asked the Prime Minister what action he is taking in regard to the recommendations of the Select Committee on Procedure set out in paragraphs 12–14 of their First Report.

Mr. R. A. Butler:

I have been asked to reply.

The Government welcome the Committee's view that the principle implicit in Standing Order No. 78 is of fundamental constitutional importance. They agree with the Committee that no change in the Standing Order should be made. In accordance with the Committee's suggestion, they reaffirm the statement made by the Prime Minister in 1937 that it is their definite intention to secure that Money Resolutions in respect of Bills shall be so framed as not to restrict the scope within which the Committee on the Bills may consider amendments further than is necessary to enable Her Majesty's Governments to discharge their responsibilities in regard to public expenditure and to leave to the Committee the utmost freedom for discussion and amendment of details which is compatible with the discharge of those responsibilities.

In order to ensure that the position of the Government on this issue is clearly understood, written instructions are again being given to Departments and to the Parliamentary Counsel's Office drawing attention to the Select Committee's Report and to this statement.

The Government take note of the Committee's view that there is no reason for extending the Standing Orders relating to public money to cover purposes other than those for which they already provide.