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High Speed Rail (Preparation) Bill

– in a Public Bill Committee on 9th July 2013.

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[Annette Brooke in the Chair]

Photo of Annette Brooke Annette Brooke Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Party 8:55 am, 9th July 2013

I have a few preliminary announcements. First, please would right hon. and hon. Members ensure that all electronic devices are turned off or switched to silent mode during Committee sittings?

As a general rule, I and my fellow Chair do not intend to call starred amendments, which are those that have not been tabled with adequate notice. The required notice period in 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 the rise of the House on Thursday for consideration on the following Tuesday. This Thursday is the deadline for amendments for the first day of line-by-line consideration on Tuesday next week.

Not everyone is familiar with the process of taking oral evidence in Public Bill Committees, so I shall briefly explain how we will proceed. The Committee will first be asked to consider the programme motion, on which debate is limited to half an hour. We will then proceed to a motion to report written evidence and then a motion to permit the Committee to deliberate in private in advance of the oral evidence sessions, which I hope we can deal with formally. Assuming that the second of those motions is agreed to, the Committee will move into private session, at which point non-Committee members will be asked to leave the room for a brief period. Once the Committee has deliberated in private, the witnesses and members of the public will be invited back into the room and our oral evidence session will begin.

Motion made, and Question proposed,

That—

(1) the Committee shall (in addition to its first meeting at 8.55 am on Tuesday 9 July) meet—

(a) at 2.00 pm on Tuesday 9 July;

(b) at 11.30 am and 2.00 pm on Thursday 11 July;

(c) at 8.55 am and 2.00 pm on Tuesday 16 July;

(d) at 11.30 am and 2.00 pm on Thursday 18 July;

(2) the Committee shall hear oral evidence in accordance with the following Table:

TABLE

Date

Time

Witness

Tuesday 9 July

Until no later than 10.00 am

London Borough of Camden; Nottingham City Council

Tuesday 9 July

Until no later than 11.00 am

Manchester City Council; Staffordshire County Council; Geoff Inskip, on behalf of Centro and the Passenger Transport Executive Group

Tuesday 9 July

Until no later than 11.25 am

Professor John Tomaney, Professor of Urban and Regional Planning, University College London

Tuesday 9 July

Until no later than 3.00 pm

51m; HS2 Action Alliance; Stop HS2

Tuesday 9 July

Until no later than 4.00 pm

Sheffield City Region Local Enterprise Partnership; Birmingham City Council

Tuesday 9 July

Until no later than 4.30 pm

Network Rail; Greengauge 21

Tuesday 9 July

Until no later than 5.00 pm

Country Land and Business Association; Campaign to Protect Rural England

Thursday 11 July

Until no later than 12.30 pm

British Chambers of Commerce; Transport Scotland

Thursday 11 July

Until no later than 2.30 pm

Campaign for Better Transport; Passenger Focus

Thursday 11 July

Until no later than 3.30 pm

Institution of Civil Engineers; Crossrail Limited; HS1 Limited

Thursday 11 July

Until no later than 4.00 pm

Rail Freight Group

Thursday 11 July

Until no later than 4.45 pm

Department for Transport; HS2 Limited

(3) proceedings on consideration of the Bill in Committee shall (so far as not previously concluded) be brought to a conclusion at 5.00 pm on Thursday 18 July.—(Mr Simon Burns.)

Photo of Frank Dobson Frank Dobson Labour, Holborn and St Pancras

In so far as the programme motion relates to the time given to witnesses, is it really appropriate that the Minister and HS2 Ltd should give evidence for only three quarters of an hour after we have had six or seven hours of evidence from other people?

Photo of Annette Brooke Annette Brooke Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Party

We are in a process wherein we make speeches at this stage, but if that is your speech, Mr Dobson, that is fine. I ask the Minister to wind up if he wishes to do so.

Photo of Simon Burns Simon Burns The Minister of State, Department for Transport

All I would say is that I think that that is a perfectly adequate period of time for the evidence sessions, because of course when the Committee goes into line-by-line consideration next week, right hon. and hon. Members on both sides will have an opportunity to raise issues, ask questions and seek information.

Question put and agreed to.

Resolved,

That, subject to the discretion of the Chair, any written evidence received by the Committee shall be reported to the House for publication.—(Mr Simon Burns.)

Photo of Annette Brooke Annette Brooke Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Party

Copies of written evidence that the Committee receives will be available in the Committee Room.

Resolved,

That, at this and any subsequent meeting at which oral evidence is to be heard, the Committee shall sit in private until the witnesses are admitted.—(Mr Simon Burns.)

The Committee deliberated in private.