I have a few preliminary announcements. Members who wish to remove their jackets during the Committee sitting may do so. Will all Members ensure that their mobile phones and pagers are turned off, or switched to silent mode? I particularly ask that no Member tweets during the sitting whatsoever.
As a general rule, I and my fellow Chair do not intend to call starred amendments that have not been tabled with adequate notice. The required notice period for Public Bill Committees is three working days. Therefore, amendments should be tabled by the rise of the House on Monday for consideration on Thursday, and by Thursday for consideration on the following Tuesday.
For those Members less familiar with the process of taking oral evidence in Public Bill Committees, it may help if I briefly explain how we will proceed. The Committee will first be asked to consider the programme motion, the debate on which is limited to half an hour. We will then proceed to take a motion to report written evidence and a motion to permit the Committee to deliberate in private in advance of hearing oral evidence, which I hope we can take formally. Assuming that the second of those motions is agreed to, the Committee will then move into private session. Once the Committee has deliberated, the witnesses and members of the public will be invited back into the room and our oral evidence session will begin. If the Committee agrees to the programme motion, we will hear oral evidence this morning.
I beg to move,
(1) the Committee shall (in addition to its first meeting at 10.30 am on Tuesday 21 June) meet—
(a) at 4.00 pm on Tuesday 21 June;
(b) at 9.00 am and 1.00 pm on Thursday 23 June;
(c) at 10.30 am and 4.00 pm on Tuesday 28 June;
(d) at 9.00 am and 1.00 pm on Thursday 30 June;
(e) at 10.30 am and 4.00 pm on Tuesday 5 July;
(2) the Committee shall hear oral evidence in accordance with the following Table:
Tuesday 21 June
Until no later than 11.30 am
The Association of Chief Police Officers; Keir Starmer QC, Director of Public Prosecutions
Tuesday 21 June
Until no later than 12.15 pm
Lord Howard of Lympne QC; Lord Carlile of Berriew QC (former independent reviewer of terrorism legislation)
Tuesday 21 June
Until no later than 4.45 pm
Lord Macdonald of River Glaven QC (independent reviewer of the review of counter-terrorism and security powers); Angus McCullough QC and Judith Farbey QC (Special Advocates)
Tuesday 21 June
Until no later than 5.30 pm
Liberty; JUSTICE; Helen Bamber Foundation
(3) proceedings on consideration of the Bill in Committee shall be taken in the following order: Clauses 1 and 2; Schedule 1; Clauses 3 to 7; Schedule 2; Clauses 8 to 15; Schedule 3; Clauses 16 to 18; Schedule 4; Clauses 19 to 22; Schedule 5; Clause 23; Schedule 6; Clauses 24 and 25; Schedules 7 and 8; Clauses 26 and 27; new Clauses; new Schedules; remaining proceedings on the Bill;
(4) the proceedings shall (so far as not previously concluded) be brought to a conclusion at 7.00 pm on Tuesday 5 July.
I am delighted to serve under your chairmanship, Mr Scott, and that of your co-Chair, Mr Caton. I am also looking forward to lively debate and discussion on the Bill with members of the Committee. I welcome to the Committee the hon. Member for Bradford South, who will be leading for the Opposition. He and I have debated a range of issues over the past few years. It is also a pleasure to welcome other Committee members. I know that a great deal of expertise and knowledge resides in the Committee, so I look forward to an informed debate around a number of the issues germane to the Bill. I underline again the Government’s commitment to dealing with terrorism and the responsibility that we hold for keeping citizens safe.
I believe that the programme motion provides plenty of time for our detailed scrutiny of the Bill. We will have eight sittings of line-by-line consideration after today’s oral evidence sessions. We believe that that will provide sufficient time, but we will monitor progress carefully to ensure that due and appropriate scrutiny is carried out.
I look forward to the scrutiny process. It was clear from our Second Reading debate that there are strongly held opinions about how the Bill should be taken forward, including views from different parties about what the emphasis should be. I look forward to listening to all sides of the argument.
Before we embark on our clause-by-clause consideration, we will hear today from a broad group of witnesses with a wide range of opinions and experience. Their expertise will assist our examination, scrutiny and detailed consideration of the Bill.
I do not want to detain the Committee further and eat into the time that Members have to question the witnesses. Accordingly, I invite the Committee to agree to the programme motion.
We do not intend to divide the Committee on the programme motion.
I welcome you to the Chair, Mr Scott, as well as Mr Caton, who will join us for subsequent sittings. I also welcome the Minister and Committee members. As the Minister said, the Committee is made up of Members with a wide range of experience on these matters, so I am sure that we will benefit from their expertise and knowledge.