Consultation on Principles

New clause 15 – in the House of Commons at 5:45 pm on 27th March 1984.

Alert me about debates like this

`Before the Secretary of State shall exercise the powers conferred upon him by section 2(4) and section 3(2) of this Act, he shall determine the principles specified in consultation with, and after taking into account any representations received from, such associations of local authorities as appear to him to be concerned and any local authority with whom consultation appears to him to be desirable; and such consultations shall have been undertaken not later than three months before the exercise of those powers.'.—[Mr. Straw.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

7 pm

Motion made, and Question proposed, That the clause be read a Second time.—[Mr. Straw.]

Photo of Mr Harry Cowans Mr Harry Cowans , Tyne Bridge

I could not have had a better entry for this new clause than what the Secretary of State said earlier if I had planned it, because the essence of the new clause is consultation about the principle. In reply to my hon. Friend the Member for Islington, South and Finsbury (Mr. Smith), the Secretary of State gave the Newcastle city council something that it has never had before, under any Government—the ability to see into the future. He said that the council was already implementing the Bill, but he does not know what the Bill's principles are because he has not yet worked them out. It is true that he gave a list of 11 different principles and went through all 11 of them, but at the end of the day, unlike Santa Claus, he did not leave us a present and tell us which one would apply. The idea that Newcastle city council can take account of something that the Secretary of State does not himself know about goes a little beyond even his vivid imagination.

The little lull that the Government had when we debated the previous two new clauses will abruptly cease on this one unless the Secretary of State does what he has so far not done and accepts a new clause. We must examine the draconian powers that are being given to the Secretary of State. We mention in the new clause the powers given to the Secretary of State by clause 2(4) of the Bill. The clause provides: The power to designate an authority shall be exercised in accordance with principles determined by the Secretary of State". It also refers to clause 3(2), which says: The power to determine a level for the total expenditure of a designated authority shall be exercised in accordance with principles determined by the Secretary of State". The common denominator between the two subsections is the fact that the Secretary of State is the person who determines the principles. Both here and in part I there is no mention of any consultation, and the principles are purely at the whim of the Secretary of State.

In Committee, many constructive amendments were moved by the Opposition and one or two, although not many, right hon. and hon. Conservative Members likened them to wrecking amendments. Although I should like to wreck this Bill, and I am sure that there are some Conservative Members who would join me in doing so, this new clause is not meant to be a wrecking one. It talks about a basic thing that should be welcomed by the Secretary of State. There should be consultation, given the fact that the House in its wisdom will pass a Bill that allows Secretaries of State to make orders and principles outside of it, and such consultation is therefore of vital importance.

Unlike Conservative Members, and particularly those on the Government Front Bench, we believe in democracy, and we believe that those who have to apply these principles should at least be consulted at all stages and should examine what is being done. After all, when he makes these principles, the Secretary of State will apply them to local authorities. We go out of our way to talk about the local authority associations and/or the local authority. We do not restrict consultation to local authority associations, because some local authorities are not members of associations. As the right hon. and learned Member for Hexham (Mr. Rippon) said, one authority may be completely different from another. Therefore. the new clause allows any authority to join in the consultations.

In particular, the new clause is relevant to part I, the selective scheme. It is not new because in other parts of the Bill the Government recognise that which we are seeking to move in this new clause. However, in the selective part of the scheme, in which we have heard that two or three, or 33 or 43, authorities will be caught, there is no provision for consultation. Even the House does nor get an opportunity to examine the principles until an order is placed before it. It is vital that local authorities should have the opportunity to be consulted by the Secretary of State, and that their views should be taken into account when he, and he alone, draws up the principles. This is a basic right which is built into the Bill at another stage and it should also be in it at this stage.

The new clause will act as a safeguard not only for local authorities but for the Secretary of State, who will be able to build in a time scale. It says: such consultations shall have been undertaken not later than three months before the exercise of those powers. That is not an unreasonable time scale. It means that a local authority cannot drag its feet, but nor can the Secretary of State.

The consultation procedure is all the more important because at no stage did the Committee have an opportunity to discuss those proposals, or even what the Secretary of State has in mind. If—this is a big "if"—the Secretary of State really wants local authorities to abide by and implement the principles that he draws up, should he not welcome the opportunity that this new clause provides for him? He could consult local authorities, explain to them the principles, take account of any reservations or alterations that they may have, and explain to them fully what he has in mind. It would cut a long story short if the Secretary of State, or the Under-Secretary of State, were to leap to his feet to accept that basic principle. However, as neither of them did so in Committee, I do not expect their approach to change now.

When the Bill was considered in Committee — it spent a comparatively long time in Committee, and that consideration could have been shorter if Ministers had had the wisdom to accept the Opposition's amendments—many questions were asked about the proposed consultative procedure. Unfortunately, very few of them were answered. With respect to the hon. Member for Birmingham, Selly Oak (Mr. Beaumont-Dark), I could not have bettered his contribution. He said: My hon. Friend the Minister may be able to consider the amendment"— it was the amendment dealing with consultation— quickly because it deals with something that is clearly unfair. I am sure that, awful though it is, the Bill is not intended to be any more unfair than necessary. Perhaps my hon. Friend the Minister will intervene"— that would have been a change— to say that those about to die will at least be allowed to consult. If consultation is to be impossible anyway, we may as well all pack up and go home. If my hon. Friend can agree to the authorities being consulted, perhaps an amendment to the amendment can be hurried through and approved. It is clear that one Conservative Member appreciated the wisdom of the new clause. If he and the Under-Secretary of State were to move along their Benches towards each other, consultation could take place across the Gangway. If that were to happen, the new clause could meet with the Government's approval.

Perhaps my hon. Friend the Member for Copeland (Dr. Cunningham) summed up the argument in a slightly better way than the hon. Member for Selly Oak, although I accept that he took a different approach. My hon. Friend said: If the Government's intentions are not just political but intended to produce more efficient, responsive local administration, sensible discussions must take place. If they do not, and local authorities do not have that statutory safeguard, some may come to believe that the Government's real motives are not concerned with bringing about greater efficiency but simply constitute a naked attack on various authorities about which the Government are unhappy. It seems that the new clause gives the Secretary of State an opportunity to refute the comments of my hon. Friend the Member for Copeland, and this is an ideal opportunity to take up what the hon. Member for Selly Oak saw as an omission in the Bill, a view which was shared by my hon. Friend.

After considerable probing the Under-Secretary of State said: I have the authority of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State to say that we shall consider, without commitment—I stress that phrase— whether we can build in a consultative provision on the principles with the associations, and whether that should be in the Bill". — [Official Report, Standing Committee G, 16 February 1984; c. 491–519.] After discussing for many hours what were described as wrecking amendments, even the Under-Secretary of State started to have doubts. He said that he would consider the matter. Unfortunately, there has been deafening silence since that breakthrough. Having said in Committee that he would consider the matter, surely he should have told us on Report whether the answer was yes or no.

7.15 pm

The Under-Secretary of State knows that during our long debates in Committee I developed a great respect for him. However, I must remind him that he said that he would consider again the Government's approach to consultation. Since then there has been a deafening silence. I suppose that that is nothing strange because an attitude that is not directed one way or the other is very much in character with the Bill.

Conservative Members may be thinking that a devilish plot has been dreamt up by the Labour party to undermine the principles in the Bill and the Government's proposed legislation. They may even think that they must resist the plot at all costs and take their troops through the Government Lobby to ensure that the Government vote massively against. Unfortunately, the Bill is riddled with instructions that are all one way. Local authorities are instructed to consult. In many instances the Bill seeks to enforce consultation upon authorities. In clause 13 every local authority is instructed to consult persons or bodies appearing to it to be representative of industrial and commercial ratepayers in its areas about its proposals for expenditure and the financing of expenditure in the next financial year. That imposes consultation upon local authorities.

In clause 9 the case of consultation is presented to us. I ask Conservative Members to put the new clause against clause 9(2). If they do so, they will find that there is not very much difference. Subsection (2) states: Before making an order under this section the Secretary of State shall consult such associations of local authorities as appear to him to be concerned and any local authority with which consultation appears to him to be desirable. Conservative Members will find that the new clause contains identical words. The Secretary of State has said on many occasions that it will never be necessary to implement part II. In effect, he has told his right and hon. Friends "Do not worry about part II. Come into the Lobby with me and support the Bill. Part II has been included only because it may be necessary in the direst circumstances."

Clause 11 reads: Before determining levels of local expenditure under section 3 above for the authorities treated as designated by virtue of section 10 above"— that is the section that introduces part II— the Secretary of State shall consult such associations of local authorities as appear to him to be concerned. If we glance at the new clause, we find that the words are identical. If the Secretary of State and those who drafted the Bill have seen fit to acknowledge a consultation procedure identical to that of the new clause, they should have a strong case for accepting the new clause. Is it sheer chance that the consultation power appears only in part II? Is part II the only part of the Bill that worries Conservative Members, as they said in today's debate? They are worried, rightly, because part II would sweep up almost all of the local authorities, including Conservative-controlled local authorities, that are caught by part I. Is it not passing strange that consultation, in the same form as new clause 15, will be necessary only when it sweeps up Conservative authorities? That is exactly what the Bill is about when it is read without the new clause. It is evident that, as soon as the Secretary of State implements the part II that he promised never to implement to bring Conservative Members into the Lobby, consultation takes a different form. The only conclusion that I can draw is that consultation in the form that we request is good for Conservative authorities but not so good when applied to Labour authorities. In that case, too, the Secretary of State will need to put up a good case.

How can any Government, even this one, be so blatantly biased in a Bill that is introducing legislation that might last for a long time? How can hon. Members on both sides of the House sit in the Chamber and, while not voting for the new clause, accept that consultation is good in part II but can be missed out of the remaining clauses? That is illogical, politically biased and blatant. The Secretary of State should be prepared to write the new clause into the Bill, as his case for opposing it is indefensible.

I should like to set out one of the other reasons. Conservative Members have quoted from the Local Government, Planning and Land Act 1980. I accept that they should do so as it is a Conservative measure. I shall illustrate the difference between that Act and the nonsense being forced upon us tonight which will be forced upon local authorities later. Part I of the 1980 Act is headed: Local Government Relaxation of Controls The Conservative Government laid down the following words of wisdom, in section 1: So much of the provisions mentioned in Schedule 1 of this Act — (a) as makes the exercise of any power of a local authority subject—(i) to a right of appeal to a Minister; or (ii) to the provisions of regulations made by a Minister; or (b) as confers upon a Minister any power to give a local authority directions or power to require a local authority to make byelaws; or (c) as requires a local authority to make any report or give any notice to a Minister, shall cease to have effect. That measure was introduced by the same Conservative party that is forcing this nonsensical Bill on hon. Members, which takes away their right to challenge the Government when the local authorities that they represent are given an order. The Bill is forced upon the public. All that has been done without providing an opportunity to be consulted on principles that are in the hands of one person —the Secretary of State for the Environment.

How can any hon. Member sit here, straight-faced, and examine the case for a Bill that says that consultation is good and shall be mandatory in relation only to part II? I do not believe that Conservative Members can honestly hold their heads high and accept the principle that what is good in part II is not so good in part I, when Labour-controlled authorities will be selectively caught by it.

After due reflection, bearing in mind his non-committal reply that he would examine the matter, the Secretary of State seemed to waver for the first time in about 30 Committee sittings. At last it seemed that the message had got through. I have two questions for the Secretary of State. First, will he tell us what happened to his promise to consider consultation, at our suggestion that it should form part of part I as well as part II? The Secretary of State could answer that question tonight and end a deafening silence. Secondly, how can the Secretary of State explain logically to the House and the public that consultation is good — and mandatory — in part II but completely ignored in part I? If he can do so, he is a better man than I thought he was. If we hear no explanation from the Secretary of State, I shall urge my right and hon. Friends to divide the House. My interpretation of the Bill and the Secretary of State's refusal to accept new clause 15 seem to be backed by my hon. Friend the Member for Copeland (Dr. Cunningham), who argued clearly that any other course would be blatant political bias against Labour local authorities that were selectively caught by the Bill The Government have had quiet runs on the two previous new clauses, but unless the Secretary of State accepts new clause 15 we shall divide the House.

Photo of Mr Michael Meadowcroft Mr Michael Meadowcroft , Leeds West

One of the amazing things about the Bill is that after many hours spent considering it we have heard only vague assertions of the principles on which the Secretary of State bases rate-capping, either for the 12 to 20 authorities or under the general scheme. A detailed case on which local authorities could base their case against rate-capping has not been put forward.

The debate on a previous new clause included a speech by the Secretary of State in which he said that the Government should not scrutinise local authorities in detail, as that was a job for the local authorities themselves. He said that the Government were trying to stop gross overspending on services. However, the Committee never went beyond the suggestion of what services would be singled out for gross overspending or whether a balance could be struck between different services on which local authorities should consider concentrating their resources.

7.30 pm

From the debate on which of the three limits would be paramount, we now know that the GRE limit will not be paramount. The target will not be paramount. A third limit will be set solely on the say-so of the Secretary of State, on principles determined entirely by him. The local authorities thus caught will not be able to determine how on earth they can avoid it, because there is no guidance within the principles that are laid down.

One is forced inexorably to the conclusion that the Bill is not about rates; that it is simply a piece of spite against local authorities which do not happen to elect Conservative councillors. It is about the political balance between the Government and local authorities. It is not about the spending of local authorities.

The hon. Member for Birmingham, Selly Oak (Mr. Beaumont-Dark) referred to the legitimate fears of some Conservative councils and said that they were jittery about the Bill. However, my prediction is that their fears will prove to be unfounded. If ever the Bill seemed likely to catch a significant number of Tory councils, the principles determined by the Secretary of State would be changed. It is not the Bill's purpose to achieve that.

Words such as "profligate", "irresponsible" and "extravagant" have been bandied about. We should be given examples of what the Minister means. It would help local authorities immensely to cope with the situation that will be forced upon them if they had some guidance on the principles on which the Secretary of State regards them as profligate, irresponsible or extravagant. The same things have been said today as were said in Committee.

We have heard about the usual easy target of some of the more bizarre grants made by local authorities under section 137 of the Local Government Act 1972. Hon. Members on both sides of the House can challenge local election procedures and so on. However, none of those things put together represent anything like a substantial sum of money. They are nothing in the context of the billions of pounds of local government expenditure.

The Secretary of State said how pleased he was to know that some local authorities were frightened by the possible enactment of the Bill and were looking at their expenditure to see what action they could take. If the Secretary of State is concerned and sincerely wishes to influence, other local authorities so that they, too, go down that road, the best thing that he could do would be to give the detail of some of the principles that he will use to determine rate-capping. If the principles were set out in detail, we could enable local authorities to avoid the Secretary of State's use of the general powers.

One such principle was suggested by the Under-Secretary of State, the hon. Member for Ealing, Acton (Sir G. Young), who pondered whether local authorities should try to combat recession in their own areas. He wondered whether that was a proper use of local government resources. A local authority might face economic problems in its area that were different from those faced by another local authority. It may be a local authority such as Bradford, with problems in the textile trade, which is dominant in that area. It would be a strange bunch of locally elected representatives who did not seek to do something particular in the area to combat the difficulty. However, If the Government say that the principle should be that local authorities should not combat recession or economic problems, so be it. Local authorities should know what the principle is.

In Committee we were often on common ground with the hon. Member for Selly Oak. We agree that there is an infinite combination of circumstances for the Secretary of State to consider when he copes with rate-capping. One cannot consider them in a simplistic way and yet do justice to local authorities. For example, will the principles be based on demography? It would be ludicrous to base too much of the case for rate-capping on demography.

Will the principles be based on economic resources or on the potential of the local authority to raise money? That is significant, but it is not the sole factor on which the principles should be based. Will they be based on the level of environmental dereliction in the area? That differs widely across the country, so it could not be the sole basis. Will it be the level of unemployment or the state of the housing stock or other buildings in the area? We had a debate the other day about industrial buildings. The Minister for Housing and Construction was sympathetic. He accepted that there might be a need to give particular consideration to that problem. Will that be the principle which the Secretary of State will use to determine whether a local authority should be capped?

There is a great kaleidoscope of principles with which we might have to cope. Why will the Government not publish the principles? What embarrassment would it cause them? Do the Secretary of State and the Government not want to have the embarrassment of arguing the case on principles with local authorities which might challenge them?

Hon. Members on both sides of the House say that if the Government are to overturn the historical relationship between locally elected representatives and Members of the House, at least they should do local government the courtesy of giving it some idea of the principles on which they will base the overturning of that relationship. They should not leave it to the whim and determination of one person alone, however important he is to the Government and the country.

Photo of Mr Raymond Powell Mr Raymond Powell , Ogmore

I am glad to be called to speak on the new clause, because it is of great significance to Welsh local authorities.

I attended most of the Committee sittings after the sad death of Joan Evans. I was surprised that no Welsh Minister was present in Committee. If one looks at the Committee proceedings, one sees that all the references to Wales were made either by loan Evans or by myself. There was no response whatsoever from the Government Front Bench about the impact of the Bill on Wales, particularly the impact of clauses 2 and 3.

I was interested in the observations of my hon. Friend the Member for Tyne Bridge (Mr. Cowans) on this issue and on the fact that the Bill is so inflexible. The only flexibility is for the Minister when he makes certain decisions. There is no directive for local authorities. The Minister has decided that in no way will he allow local authorities any guidelines so that they can avoid being capped.

In Committee I referred to my local authority, the Ogwr borough authority, which spends about £9·5 million. However, because of the forecast increase in spending in the next 12 months, that amount will go well over the £10 million figure and in all probability the authority will be capped in 1985–86. The Minister said that the general power would be taken only in absolutely essential and exceptional circumstances. We want to find out what are the exceptional and absolutely essential circumstances. Despite the deep and lengthy probing of my hon. Friend the Member for Tyne Bridge and others of my hon. Friends, little response has been forthcoming from the Minister. As my hon. Friend said, it is essential to force a Division on the new clause so that the House and local authorities throughout Britain, but especially in Wales, know of our decision.

Photo of Mr William Waldegrave Mr William Waldegrave , Bristol West

The hon. Member for Tyne Bridge (Mr. Cowans) said that in Committee I appeared to be wavering on this matter. He was right. Hon. Members on both sides of the House have put forward strong arguments on this matter. The hon. Gentleman gave us credit for the fact that nothing in other parts of the legislation, or other local government legislation, stands against the principle of consultation. On the contrary, we try, wherever reasonable, to build in consultation. We start, therefore, with a presumption in favour of the new clause. That is why we said that we would look seriously at the proposal, and we have done so.

There are powerful arguments against the new clause. I hope to convince the hon. Member for Tyne Bridge that those arguments are matters not of principle of the type to which he referred but are more to do with practicality. I accept that, as the new clause is drafted, consultation on the principles must be near to the process of designation. I presume that is the purpose of the three-month limitation on when consultations will be undertaken. There will not, therefore, be vacuous discussion early on. That is a fair point. Consultation should be as late as possible so that real discussion can occur.

I assure the hon. Gentleman that reconsideration of this matter has not been a matter of form. One argument, which causes difficulty, is that the closer we get to designation of the authorities, the closer we get to discussion not about general principles but about which authorities are caught by different sets of principles. At that point, we are near to discussing individual authorities. I am not sure that it is right to involve the local associations in those discussions. Normally, they are rightly chary of becoming involved in discussions about the relationship between the Government and a particular local authority. Their job is to represent the different classes of authorities generally.

We are on the horns of a dilemma. It might not be proper to involve the local authorities in discussions about whether a particular authority is caught, so some weight must be attached to that argument.

In Committee the Opposition rightly pressed another, more serious argument—not to introduce delays at the end of the process. The local authorities and their officers must be involved in a dialogue with central Government as early as possible so that they know where they are. They will wish to put together their case for derogation. It is essential that there are no delays. The room for delay becomes a problem when building in a statutory consultation procedure at the end of the process, where it will be meaningful. Even with the best will in the world, we have seen in the past few months that there is room for delay of one kind or another— for example, in legal challenges about whether the Association of London Authorities is to be properly consulted. Those delays are greatly against one of the other interests of local authorities, which hon. Members have rightly pressed—that local authorities should know where they are as soon as possible.

I assure the hon. Gentleman in an unbiased way that we start with a presumption in favour of consultation. However, I have concluded that if we accept this measure, the authorities might be worse off.

Photo of Mr Harry Cowans Mr Harry Cowans , Tyne Bridge

I do not see the dilemma. The Under-Secretary of State might not want to involve the voluntary associations, but the new clause is worded so that he can have consultations with any local authority he wishes. When will the hon. Gentleman get round to defending the view that mandatory consultations are good in part II but should not exist in part I?

Photo of Mr William Waldegrave Mr William Waldegrave , Bristol West 7:45 pm, 27th March 1984

That is the second leg of my argument. I take it that the hon. Gentleman wishes to involve the associations. It is essential that there should be a real dialogue with individual authorities. Such discussions will not deal greatly with principles, which, I suspect, will influence the associations. The Secretary of State outlined to the Committee the list of alternative principles. Whichever set is used, a large number of the same authorities will be involved. The authorities will want to be involved in a dialogue about the specific position in which they find themselves, and I do not wish to delay that process.

The hon. Member for Tyne Bridge said that we must be up to no good because we have built consultation into part II but not into part I. I hope that I can reassure the hon. Gentleman that the reason why we shall have consultation under part II is consistent with the argument I have just put forward for not having consultation under part I. In part I, the discussion will be about the position of individual authorities, where they are not properly involved. In part II, because authorities generally will be involved, it will be right for the local authority associations to have consultations. For that reason, the positions differ.

Photo of Mr William Waldegrave Mr William Waldegrave , Bristol West

I see that I have not convinced the hon. Gentleman. I am sorry about that. The Government have come down in favour of not accepting the new clause.

Photo of Dr Jack Cunningham Dr Jack Cunningham Shadow Secretary of State, Shadow Secretary of State for Environment

The Labour party is the argument of the Under-Secretary of State. It is amazing that a Government who say that they adhere to the principles of local democracy will give a statutory right of consultation to industry and commerce but not to local councils, either individually or collectively. It is astonishing that the Under-Secretary of State should say that it is important that this principle is embodied in part II, which the Secretary of State said the Government do not intend to use except in extremis and hope never to use, but cannot embody the principle in part I, which the Government intend to use as soon as possible. Is it not a classic example of standing logic on its head to say, "This is important in a case where it will never be used but unimportant in a case when we know it will be used"?

That was the most unconvincing response that we could have heard from the Under-Secretary of State on the important issue of the right of local authorities, which are to have their democratic freedom taken away by the Government under the provisions of the Bill, to be consulted.

Photo of Dr Jack Cunningham Dr Jack Cunningham Shadow Secretary of State, Shadow Secretary of State for Environment

My hon. Friend says that it is insulting to local authorities, and I agree with him. We shall press the motion to a Division.

Question put, That the clause be read a Second time:—

The House divided: Ayes 184, Noes 291.

Division No. 206][7.50 p.m.
Adams, Allen (Paisley N)Cook, Frank (Stockton North)
Alton, DavidCook, Robin F. (Livingston)
Anderson, DonaldCorbett, Robin
Archer, Rt Hon PeterCorbyn, Jeremy
Ashdown, PaddyCowans, Harry
Ashley, Rt Hon JackCraigen, J. M.
Atkinson, N. (Tottenham)Crowther, Stan
Bagier, Gordon A. T.Cunliffe, Lawrence
Banks, Tony (Newham NW)Cunningham, Dr John
Barnett, GuyDalyell, Tam
Barron, KevinDavies, Rt Hon Denzil (L'lli)
Beaumont-Dark, AnthonyDavies, Ronald (Caerphilly)
Beckett, Mrs MargaretDavis, Terry (B'ham, H'ge H't)
Beith, A. J.Deakins, Eric
Bennett, A. (Dent'n & Red'sh)Dixon, Donald
Bermingham, GeraldDobson, Frank
Bidwell, SydneyDubs, Alfred
Blair, AnthonyDunwoody, Hon Mrs G.
Boyes, RolandEadie, Alex
Bray, Dr JeremyEastham, Ken
Brown, Gordon (D'f'mline E)Edwards, Bob (W'h'mpt'n SE)
Brown, Hugh D. (Provan)Ellis, Raymond
Brown, N. (N'c'tle-u-Tyne E)Evans, John (St. Helens N)
Brown, Ron (E'burgh, Leith)Ewing, Harry
Bruce, MalcolmFatchett, Derek
Buchan, NormanFaulds, Andrew
Callaghan, Jim (Heyw'd & M)Field, Frank (Birkenhead)
Campbell-Savours, DaleFields, T. (L'pool Broad Gn)
Canavan, DennisFisher, Mark
Carlile, Alexander (Montg'y)Flannery, Martin
Cartwright, JohnFoot, Rt Hon Michael
Clark, Dr David (S Shields)Forrester, John
Clarke, ThomasFoster, Derek
Clay, RobertFoulkes, George
Cocks, Rt Hon M. (Bristol S.)Fraser, J. (Norwood)
Cohen, HarryGarrett, W. E.
Coleman, DonaldGeorge, Bruce
Concannon, Rt Hon J. D.Godman, Dr Norman
Conlan, BernardGould, Bryan
Hardy, PeterO'Neill, Martin
Harman, Ms HarrietPark, George
Harrison, Rt Hon WalterParry, Robert
Hart, Rt Hon Dame JudithPatchett, Terry
Haynes, FrankPavitt, Laurie
Healey, Rt Hon DenisPendry, Tom
Hogg, N. (C'nauld & Kilsyth)Penhaligon, David
Holland, Stuart (Vauxhall)Pike, Peter
Home Robertson, JohnPowell, Raymond (Ogmore)
Howells, GeraintPrescott, John
Hoyle, DouglasRadice, Giles
Hughes, Dr. Mark (Durham)Randall, Stuart
Hughes, Robert (Aberdeen N)Redmond, M.
Hughes, Roy (Newport East)Richardson, Ms Jo
Hughes, Sean (Knowsley S)Roberts, Allan (Bootle)
Hughes, Simon (Southwark)Robertson, George
Janner, Hon GrevilleRobinson, G. (Coventry NW)
Jenkins, Rt Hon Roy (Hillh'd)Rooker, J. W.
John, BrynmorRoss, Ernest (Dundee W)
Johnston, RussellRowlands, Ted
Jones, Barry (Alyn & Deeside)Ryman, John
Kaufman, Rt Hon GeraldSedgemore, Brian
Kennedy, CharlesSheerman, Barry
Kirkwood, ArchibaldShore, Rt Hon Peter
Lambie, DavidShort, Ms Clare (Ladywood)
Lamond, JamesShort, Mrs H.(W'hampt'n NE)
Lewis, Ron (Carlisle)Silkin, Rt Hon J.
Lewis, Terence (Worsley)Skinner, Dennis
Litherland, RobertSmith, C.(Isl'ton S & F'bury)
Lloyd, Tony (Stretford)Smith, Rt Hon J. (M'kl'ds E)
Loyden, EdwardSoley, Clive
McCartney, HughSpearing, Nigel
McDonald, Dr OonaghStott, Roger
McKelvey, WilliamStrang, Gavin
Mackenzie, Rt Hon GregorStraw, Jack
Maclennan, RobertThomas, Dafydd (Merioneth)
McNamara, KevinThomas, Dr R. (Carmarthen)
McTaggart, RobertThompson, J. (Wansbeck)
McWilliam, JohnThorne, Stan (Preston)
Madden, MaxTinn, James
Marek, Dr JohnTorney, Tom
Marshall, David (Shettleston)Wallace, James
Martin, MichaelWardell, Gareth (Gower)
Mason, Rt Hon RoyWareing, Robert
Maxton, JohnWeetch, Ken
Maynard, Miss JoanWelsh, Michael
Meadowcroft, MichaelWhite, James
Michie, WilliamWilliams, Rt Hon A.
Mikardo, IanWinnick, David
Millan, Rt Hon BruceWoodall, Alec
Miller, Dr M. S. (E Kilbride)Young, David (Bolton SE)
Mitchell, Austin (G't Grimsby)
Morris, Rt Hon J. (Aberavon)Tellers for the Ayes:
Morrison, Hon C. (Devizes)Mr. James Hamilton and Mr. Allen McKay.
Nellist, David
Adley, RobertBraine, Sir Bernard
Aitken, JonathanBrandon-Bravo, Martin
Alexander, RichardBright, Graham
Alison, Rt Hon MichaelBrinton, Tim
Amery, Rt Hon JulianBrittan, Rt Hon Leon
Ancram, MichaelBrown, M. (Brigg & Cl'thpes)
Arnold, TomBrowne, John
Ashby, DavidBruinvels, Peter
Atkins, Robert (South Ribble)Bryan, Sir Paul
Atkinson, David (B'm'th E)Buck, Sir Antony
Baker, Nicholas (N Dorset)Budgen, Nick
Baldry, AnthonyBurt, Alistair
Banks, Robert (Harrogate)Butcher, John
Bendali, VivianButterfiil, John
Bennett, Sir Frederic (T'bay)Carlisle, John (N Luton)
Best, KeithCarlisle, Kenneth (Lincoln)
Bevan, David GilroyCarttiss, Michael
Biffen, Rt Hon JohnChalker, Mrs Lynda
Biggs-Davison, Sir JohnChapman, Sydney
Bonsor, Sir NicholasChope, Christopher
Bottomley, PeterChurchill, W. S.
Bowden, Gerald (Dulwich)Clark, Dr Michael (Rochford)
Boyson, Dr RhodesClark, Sir W. (Croydon S)
Clarke, Rt Hon K. (Rushcliffe)Howell, Rt Hon D. (G'ldford)
Clegg, Sir WalterHowell, Ralph (N Norfolk)
Cockeram, EricHubbard-Miles, Peter
Colvin, MichaelHunt, David (Wirral)
Cope, JohnHunt, John (Ravensbourne)
Corrie, JohnHunter, Andrew
Couchman, JamesHurd, Rt Hon Douglas
Cranborne, ViscountIrving, Charles
Currie, Mrs EdwinaJenkin, Rt Hon Patrick
Dickens, GeoffreyJohnson-Smith, Sir Geoffrey
Dicks, TerryJones, Gwilym (Cardiff N)
Dorrell, StephenJones, Robert (W Herts)
Douglas-Hamilton, Lord J.Joseph, Rt Hon Sir Keith
Dover, DenKershaw, Sir Anthony
du Cann, Rt Hon EdwardKing, Roger (B'ham N'field)
Dunn, RobertKing, Rt Hon Tom
Durant, TonyKnight, Gregory (Derby N)
Eggar, TimKnight, Mrs Jill (Edgbaston)
Emery, Sir PeterKnowles, Michael
Evennett, DavidLamont, Norman
Eyre, Sir ReginaldLang, Ian
Fallon, MichaelLatham, Michael
Farr, JohnLawler, Geoffrey
Favell, AnthonyLawrence, Ivan
Fenner, Mrs PeggyLawson, Rt Hon Nigel
Finsberg, Sir GeoffreyLeigh, Edward (Gainsbor'gh)
Fletcher, AlexanderLennox-Boyd, Hon Mark
Fookes, Miss JanetLester, Jim
Forman, NigelLilley, Peter
Forsyth, Michael (Stirling)Lloyd, Ian (Havant)
Fowler, Rt Hon NormanLloyd, Peter, (Fareham)
Fox, MarcusLyell, Nicholas
Fraser, Peter (Angus East)McCrindle, Robert
Freeman, RogerMcCurley, Mrs Anna
Fry, PeterMacfarlane, Neil
Gale, RogerMacKay, Andrew (Berkshire)
Galley, RoyMacKay, John (Argyll & Bute)
Gardiner, George (Reigate)Maclean, David John.
Gardner, Sir Edward (Fylde)McQuarrie, Albert
Garel-Jones, TristanMajor, John
Gilmour, Rt Hon Sir IanMalins, Humfrey
Glyn, Dr AlanMalone, Gerald
Goodlad, AlastairMarland, Paul
Gorst, JohnMarlow, Antony
Gow, IanMaude, Hon Francis
Gower, Sir RaymondMawhinney, Dr Brian
Grant, Sir AnthonyMaxwell-Hyslop, Robin
Greenway, HarryMayhew, Sir Patrick
Gregory, ConalMellor, David
Griffiths, E. (B'y St Edm'ds)Merchant, Piers
Griffiths, Peter (Portsm'th N)Miller, Hal (B'grove)
Grist, IanMills, Iain (Meriden)
Ground, PatrickMills, Sir Peter (West Devon)
Grylis, MichaelMiscampbell, Norman
Gummer, John SelwynMoate, Roger
Hamilton, Neil (Tatton)Monro, Sir Hector
Hampson, Dr KeithMontgomery, Fergus
Hanley, JeremyMorrison, Hon P. (Chester)
Hannam,JohnMudd, David
Harvey, RobertMurphy, Christopher
Haselhurst, AlanNeale, Gerrard
Havers, Rt Hon Sir MichaelNelson, Anthony
Hawkins, Sir Paul (SW N'folk)Neubert, Michael
Hawksley, WarrenNewton, Tony
Hayhoe, BarneyNicholls, Patrick
Hayward, RobertNorris, Steven
Heathcoat-Amory, DavidOnslow, Cranley
Heddle, JohnOppenheim, Philip
Henderson, BarryOppenheim, Rt Hon Mrs S.
Hickmet, RichardOsborn, Sir John
Higgins, Rt Hon Terence L.Ottaway, Richard
Hill, JamesPage, John (Harrow W)
Hind, KennethPage, Richard (Herts SW)
Hirst, MichaelParris, Matthew
Holland, Sir Philip (Gedling)Patten, John (Oxford)
Holt, RichardPattie, Geoffrey
Hooson, TomPawsey, James
Hordern, PeterPeacock, Mrs Elizabeth
Howard, MichaelPink, R. Bonner
Howarth, Gerald (Cannock)Pollock, Alexander
Porter, BarryTapsell, Peter
Powell, William (Corby)Taylor, Teddy (S'end E)
Powley, JohnTemple-Morris, Peter
Price, Sir DavidTerlezki, Stefan
Proctor, K. HarveyThatcher, Rt Hon Mrs M.
Rathbone, TimThomas, Rt Hon Peter
Rees, Rt Hon Peter (Dover)Thompson, Donald (Calder V)
Renton, TimThompson, Patrick (N'ich N)
Rhodes James, RobertThornton, Malcolm
Ridley, Rt Hon NicholasThurnham, Peter
Ridsdale, Sir JulianTownend, John (Bridlington)
Roberts, Wyn (Conwy)Townsend, Cyril D. (B'heath)
Robinson, Mark (N'port W)Tracey, Richard
Roe, Mrs MarionTrotter, Neville
Rossi, Sir Hughvan Straubenzee, Sir W.
Rost, PeterVaughan, Sir Gerard
Rumbold, Mrs AngelaWaddington, David
Ryder, RichardWakeham, Rt Hon John
Sackville, Hon ThomasWaldegrave, Hon William
Sainsbury, Hon TimothyWalker, Bill (T'side N)
St. John-Stevas, Rt Hon N.Waller, Gary
Sayeed, JonathanWalters, Dennis
Shaw, Sir Michael (Scarb')Ward, John
Shelton, William (Streatham)Wardle, C. (Bexhill)
Shepherd, Colin (Hereford)Warren, Kenneth
Shepherd, Richard (Aldhdge)Watson, John
Silvester, FredWatts, John
Sims, RogerWells, Bowen (Hertford)
Skeet, T. H. H.Wells, John (Maidstone)
Smith, Sir Dudley (Warwick)Wheeler, John
Smith, Tim (Beaconsfield)Whitfield, John
Soames, Hon NicholasWhitney, Raymond
Spencer, DerekWilkinson, John
Spicer, Michael (S Worcs)Winterton, Mrs Ann
Stanbrook, IvorWinterton, Nicholas
Steen, AnthonyWolfson, Mark
Stern, MichaelWood, Timothy
Stevens, Lewis (Nuneaton)Woodcock, Michael
Stevens, Martin (Fulham)Young, Sir George (Acton)
Stewart, Allan (Eastwood)Younger, Rt Hon George
Stewart, Andrew (Sherwood)
Stewart, Ian (N Hertf'dshire)Tellers for the Noes:
Stokes, JohnMr. Carol Mather and Mr. Robert Boscawen.
Stradling Thomas, J.
Sumberg, David

Question accordingly negatived.