Animal Health Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:30 pm on 7th October 2002.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of The Earl of Onslow The Earl of Onslow Conservative 4:30 pm, 7th October 2002

My Lords, I have one suggestion for the Minister to consider. We have about four weeks until the State Opening of Parliament. Would it not be miles better to take away this Bill, reintroduce it in the dog days of the early part of the Session to your Lordships' House and do so in a way whereby we could have time to consider it properly and get it through this Chamber in, say, six weeks? We would have it ready to go to the Commons before Christmas, and it could be out of the other place fairly quickly. In those circumstances, the Bill would have been well scrutinised in this place and we would not have this gobbledegook of how not to approach legislation.

The noble Lord, Lord Whitty, is clever enough to realise the advantage of my suggestion. As for the noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams of Mostyn, he is much cleverer than the noble Lord, Lord Whitty. He can certainly see the advantage of such an approach. I am not being beastly to the Government; I am trying to suggest to them a way out of what is a ghastly legislative muddle. We must get this right. If we do it in the way now proposed, it is likely to become a sort of Mark l, gold-plated "Dangerous Dogs Bill". I am sure that neither the noble and learned Lord, Lord Williams, nor the noble Lord, Lord Whitty, would like to see that happen.