Business of the House

– in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 4th July 1957.

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Photo of Mr Hugh Gaitskell Mr Hugh Gaitskell , Leeds South 12:00 am, 4th July 1957

May I ask the Lord Privy Seal whether he will state the business for next week?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

Yes, Sir. The business for next week will be as follows:

MONDAY, 8TH JULY—Supply [19th Allotted Day]: Committee, which it is proposed to take formally.

Debate on a Motion to take note of the Report of the Royal Commission on the Law relating to Mental Illness and Mental Deficiency.

TUESDAY, 9TH JULY—Second Reading of the Exchequer and Audit Departments Bill, the Judicial Offices (Salaries and Pensions) Bill, and of the Ministerial Salaries Bill.

Committee stage of the necessary Money Resolutions.

Consideration of a Motion relating to Remuneration of Members of this House, and Expenses of Peers.

Committee and remaining stages of the Army (Conditions of Enlistment) Bill.

Committee stage of the Navy, Army and Air Expenditure, 1955–56.

WEDNESDAY, 10TH JULY—Supply [20th Allotted Day]: Committee, which it is proposed to take formally.

A debate will take place on the Report and Accounts of the British Transport Commission for 1956.

Consideration of the Motions to approve the Draft National Insurance (Married Women) Amendment Regulations, and the Draft Ancillary Dental Workers Regulations.

THURSDAY, 11TH JULY—Committee and remaining stages of the Exchequer and Audit Departments Bill, the Judicial Offices (Salaries and Pensions) Bill and of the Ministerial Salaries Bill.

Consideration of Lords Amendments to the Electricity Bill.

Report stage of the Navy, Army and Air Expenditure, 1955–56.

Consideration of the Motions to approve the Draft Cinematograph Films Regulations, and the Draft Wool Textile Industry Orders.

FRIDAY, 12TH JULY—Second Reading of the Federation of Malaya Independence Bill, and of the Geneva Conventions Bill [Lords].

Committee and remaining stages of the Tanganyika Agricultural Corporation Bill.

Photo of Mr Hugh Gaitskell Mr Hugh Gaitskell , Leeds South

As there is a rather long list of Bills for Tuesday's and Thursday's business, would the Leader of the House confirm that, although the list is long, the business is not, in fact, likely to take such a lengthy time as might be supposed?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

We do not anticipate that, with the good will of the House, and as we are making these Bills available, two of them now, and the Ministerial Salaries Bill tomorrow, there should necessarily be very long sittings. We think that we can manage to get the business in good time.

Photo of Mr Willie Hamilton Mr Willie Hamilton , Fife West

Can the Leader of the House say what is the result of his consideration of the question I asked him last week, whether we could have, before the summer Recess, a debate on the United Nations Report on the events in Hungary?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

It will be difficult to do that before the Recess. I have been giving the hon. Gentleman's request consideration. It is a matter which he ought also to discuss with his hon. Friends.

Photo of Sir Ian Fraser Sir Ian Fraser , Morecambe and Lonsdale

On the question of the announcement of the Prime Minister today on Members' and Ministers' remuneration, having regard to the fact that all the changes proposed will take effect as from 1st July—[An HON. MEMBER: "If they are passed."]—yes, if they are passed, the date upon which they are debated will not make any difference to anyone's private interest. May I ask my right hon. Friend whether it is not in the public interest that the discussion on Members' pay should take place at the same time as those other discussions, and as quickly as possible?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

We have so arranged the business that on two days next week these general discussions will take place. I hope that after proper consideration the matter will be able to be regulated.

Photo of Sir Ian Fraser Sir Ian Fraser , Morecambe and Lonsdale

I thought that my right hon. Friend did not mention that a Resolution would be taken.

Hon. Members:

He did.

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

Actually, I used the word "Motion" instead of "Resolution." Technically, the word "Motion" is right.

Photo of Mr Frank Beswick Mr Frank Beswick , Uxbridge

Is the Leader of the House aware that last week the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation made a statement in answer to a non-Oral Question relating to important changes in the licensing of independent airline operators? Will there be time to debate that statement?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

I do not think that we can fit in very much more next week, but we will certainly give the matter consideration.

Photo of Mr Norman Cole Mr Norman Cole , Bedfordshire South

Has my right hon. Friend been able to consider making a day available before the Recess for the debate on roads, for which my hon. Friend the Member for Wembley, South (Mr. Russell) and myself asked him?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

I am aware of that matter, but I think that the timetable of business to be done before the Recess is getting rather full.

Photo of Mr George Thomas Mr George Thomas , Cardiff West

As we are likely to discuss before the end of the month the reorganisation of local government, can the Leader of the House say when we may expect a White Paper so that we may be adequately prepared for the debate? There is a great deal of interest and anxiety about the matter outside the House.

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

It is our idea that the White Paper shall be available if we are, as we think, to have a debate. The two things go together. I hope that we shall be able to publish this before long.

Photo of Mr John Biggs-Davison Mr John Biggs-Davison , Chigwell

Can my right hon. Friend say whether we may expect a debate on foreign affairs before the Recess, as quite a lot of things seem to be happening in the world?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

Things are certainly busy, but that is a matter for Her Maejsty's Opposition, on a Supply day. It is also a matter which is in our own minds. I can certainly undertake to discuss my hon. Friend's point with the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.

Photo of Mr Kenneth Robinson Mr Kenneth Robinson , St Pancras North

Can the right hon. Gentleman say when can we expect the report of the Committee of Privileges on the complaint that my right hon. Friend the Member for Vauxhall (Mr. G. R. Strauss) made more than three months ago?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

Members of the Committee of Privileges will bear me out when I say that we have had regular meetings and have found this subject one of great complexity. It involves all the traditions of the House. I cannot give a date for publication of the report, but I can give an undertaking to the House and to the hon. Member that we shall not in any way delay our deliberations on the matter. I would give this advice: if we are to do our work properly, since this question involves most of the traditions of the House, it is important that we should do our work thoroughly.

Photo of Mr Cyril Osborne Mr Cyril Osborne , Louth Borough

In view of the great importance of the European Free Trade proposals to both our agriculture and our industry, can my right hon. Friend find time to discuss this matter before the Recess?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

It is unlikely that there will be an actual day. It is dependent upon what is chosen for Supply days. I recognise the importance of the subject.

Photo of Mr Ian Mikardo Mr Ian Mikardo , Reading

Reverting to the question put by my hon. Friend the Member for Uxbridge (Mr. Beswick), may I ask the right hon. Gentleman to bear in mind, in considering whether we ought to have a debate on the statement made by the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation, that the statement was very complex and was of the type normally made in answer to Questions or at the end of Questions. It was made in answer to a Written Question and there was not an opportunity to ask questions for clarification. Would the right hon. Gentleman bear that point in mind in considering the necessity for an opportunity of clarifying the right hon. Gentleman's announcement?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

There is, of course, also the opportunity of a Supply day. I think it is an example of how we take care of our liberties that the matter has been raised and that hon. Members have drawn attention to it.

Photo of Mr Charles Pannell Mr Charles Pannell , Leeds West

The Leader of the House will recall that we have referred before to the failure of the usual channels to set up a Select Committee on accommodation? The difference between us appears to be the completely inadequate terms of reference the Committee had before, and our desire that they should be adequate. Bearing in mind the fact that the House now has a new Serjeant at Arms, would it not be better to get the arrangements of the House to work properly? Now that we have cleared up hon. Members' financial difficulties, would it not be a good thing, next Session, if not in this, to set up a Select Committee to put right the pitifully inadequate conditions under which hon. Members work?

Photo of Mr R.A. Butler Mr R.A. Butler , Saffron Walden

I think the hon. Member's suggestion is perfectly reasonable, but it is rather late to do anything this Session. As a matter of fact, we have had exchanges between the two sides of the House on the question of accommodation, so the matter has not been forgotten. Certain adjustments have been made, although they may not be altogether satisfactory. Hon. Members will see that the matter has not slipped our notice. I will bear the hon. Gentleman's point in mind.