I beg to move,
That Private Members’ Bills shall have precedence over Government business on 20 October, 3 November, 1 December 2017, 19 January, 2 and 23 February, 16 March, 27 April, 11 May, 15 June, 6 July, 26 October and 23 November 2018.
The purpose of this motion is to provide 13 days for private Members’ business, in line with what is required under Standing Order No. 14. Given that we have already announced that this will be an extended Session, we will of course expect to provide additional days in due course. In the extended parliamentary Session of 2010-12, the Government provided extra days for private Members’ Bills, and these were approved at a later date. The motion we are dealing with today covers days for private Members’ Bills between now and 23 November 2018. We will therefore bring forward a motion to provide additional days for private Members’ Bills in due course, which will allow us to take into account the progress of business and any new recess dates that are announced in future.
This House must balance the needs of Members to proceed with private Members’ business with Members’ other priorities. Members value time spent in their constituencies on Fridays, and scheduling additional sitting Fridays for private Members’ Bills in 2019, with no regard to what pressures might exist at that time, could cause avoidable inconvenience. This motion is a proportionate way to deal with this being a longer Session, and I encourage the House to support it.