Clause 14

Part of Compensation Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 6:45 pm on 27th June 2006.

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Photo of Simon Hughes Simon Hughes Shadow Attorney General, Shadow Lord Chancellor and Shadow Secretary of State for Justice, Party Chair, Liberal Democrats 6:45 pm, 27th June 2006

I beg to move amendment No. 38, in clause 14, page 9, line 9, leave out from ‘section 5' to end of line 10 and insert

‘may not be made unless a draft has been laid before, and approved by resolution of, each House of Parliament.'.

The amendment would change the provision so that orders made under clause 5 are subject to the affirmative procedure rather than the negative procedure. I hinted at this a moment ago, so I will simply put it on the record that it is entirely consistent for the Committee to agree the affirmative resolution procedure for such orders made under clause 5, which is about exemptions, just as we are asked to agree the affirmative resolution procedure for orders made under section 4, which is about the regulator. They are equally important matters. If I were in any doubt about that or if Committee colleagues, whatever their views, were in any doubt, I hope that the earlier debate made it clear how important the matter is. I also hope that the Minister will understand that it is important to me and will be important to my colleagues on Report.

I did not vote on the amendments on trade unions moved by the hon. Member for North-East Hertfordshire because the right way to deal with the problem is not to close off in Committee the Minister’s power to exempt trade unions, but to give Parliament the right to decide when an order is introduced—automatically and only after a debate and a vote in both Houses—whether she should bring a particular exemption or exemptions to the House. I hope that she will be sympathetic to the amendment and that colleagues from all parties will see the merit in guaranteeing the subject a debate and vote in both Houses. It is important.