Northern Ireland Budget (Anticipation and Adjustments) (No. 2) Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 4:23 pm on 5th March 2019.

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Photo of Tony Lloyd Tony Lloyd Shadow Secretary of State for Northern Ireland 4:23 pm, 5th March 2019

I think the Secretary of State is confirming that this is not an emergency and that the procedures to allow everything to be forced through so quickly are not absolutely necessary. The different parts of the Bill—the retrospective definition of what was legal spend and the anticipatory spend for next year—could have been separated. The second most certainly could have been done more slowly. There could have been capacity for much greater and lengthier scrutiny of those processes. That is important. The suspicion about the 70% is that it anticipates that there will not be an Executive or an Assembly back in operation. It allows the situation to ride over and ride over. The concern is that there is no ambition to see the restoration of Stormont.