The next item of business is consideration of motion S1M-3749, in the name of Patricia Ferguson, on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau, setting out the timetable for stage 3 consideration of the Local Government in Scotland Bill.
That the Parliament agrees that, at Stage 3 of the Local Government in Scotland Bill, debate on each part of the proceedings shall be brought to a conclusion by the time-limits indicated (each time-limit being calculated from when Stage 3 begins and excluding any periods when the meeting is suspended)— Groups 1 to 5 - no later than 35 minutes Groups 6 to 13 - no later than 1 hour 5 minutes Groups 14 to 21 - no later than 1 hour 45 minutes Group 22 - no later than 2 hours Motion to pass the Bill - no later than 2 hours 30 minutes—[Euan Robson.]
I seek guidance because various colleagues have informed me that today's business might continue until 7 o'clock or possibly until tomorrow morning. However, according to the timetabling motion that has just been moved, the final group of amendments must be concluded no later than two hours after the proceedings begin, which will be at half-past 4. What are we being asked to vote for? Are we being asked to vote on whether all the amendments should be dealt with by half-past 4? Will proper time be given to the amendments, which might mean continuing until 7 o'clock, or, if necessary, into tomorrow morning?
It was thought that it might be necessary to continue until 7 o'clock, but in view of the number of amendments, it is not now considered necessary to use the extra two hours. Stage 3 should be completed by 5 o'clock this evening.