Business Motions

– in the Scottish Parliament at 5:00 pm on 3rd February 2010.

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Photo of Alex Fergusson Alex Fergusson None 5:00 pm, 3rd February 2010

The next item of business is consideration of business motion S3M-5663, in the name of Bruce Crawford, on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau, to enable business to begin at 9 am on Thursday 4 February.

Motion moved,

That the Parliament agrees that "09.00" be substituted for "09:15" in Rule 2.2.3 for the purpose of allowing the meeting of the Parliament on Thursday 4 February 2010 to begin at 9.00 am—[Bruce Crawford].

Photo of Alex Fergusson Alex Fergusson None

George Foulkes has asked to speak against the motion.

Members:

Oh, no.

Photo of Alex Fergusson Alex Fergusson None

Order. He is entitled to do so.

Photo of Lord George Foulkes Lord George Foulkes Labour

I thank members for that warm welcome.

The simple and single reason why I speak against the motion is that I do not think that such motions should always be just moved. The Parliament, and not just the Parliamentary Bureau, deserves an explanation for changes to the Parliament's timetable of business. I hope that the Minister for Parliamentary Business will take the opportunity to explain to the Parliament why he moved the motion.

Photo of Bruce Crawford Bruce Crawford Scottish National Party 5:01 pm, 3rd February 2010

I understand Lord Foulkes's point. As members know, the Marine (Scotland) Bill is a crucial bill, which will introduce a management framework for the seas around Scotland. The reason for starting the debate at 9 am is that 123 amendments to the bill were lodged, which requires 22 groups of amendments if we are to dispose of the business. Of the 123 amendments, 34 were lodged by Labour Party members—I welcome those amendments—and significant numbers were lodged by members of other parties.

Lord Foulkes should reflect on the fact that in many stage 3 proceedings not enough time is found to debate important amendments. Many back benchers have told me that. For example, last week, at stage 3 of the Tobacco and Primary Medical Services (Scotland) Bill, debate on important amendments was curtailed because time was at a premium.

It is the job of the Parliamentary Bureau and the Parliament to respond to such matters. I am sure that Lord George Foulkes would not want the bureau to be accused of trying to stifle debate by curtailing time for important back-bench speeches. I hope that I have persuaded him on why we want to move the starting time to 9 am. The approach was recommended by the parliamentary authorities and unanimously agreed to by the Parliamentary Bureau.

Photo of Alex Fergusson Alex Fergusson None

The question is, that motion S3M-5663 be agreed to.

Motion agreed to,

That the Parliament agrees that "09.00" be substituted for "09:15" in Rule 2.2.3 for the purpose of allowing the meeting of the Parliament on Thursday 4 February 2010 to begin at 9.00 am.

Photo of Alex Fergusson Alex Fergusson None

The next item of business is consideration of business motion S3M-5662, in the name of Bruce Crawford, on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau, setting out a revision to the business programme for Thursday 4 February.

Motion moved,

That the Parliament agrees the following revision to the programme of business for Thursday 4 February 2010— delete

9.15 am Parliamentary Bureau Motions followed by Stage 3 Proceedings: Marine (Scotland) Bill and insert

9.00 am Parliamentary Bureau Motions followed by Stage 3 Proceedings: Marine (Scotland) Bill—[Bruce Crawford].

Motion agreed to.

Photo of Alex Fergusson Alex Fergusson None

The next item of business is consideration of business motion S3M-5664, in the name of Bruce Crawford, on behalf of the Parliamentary Bureau, setting out a business programme.

Motion moved,

That the Parliament agrees the following programme of business— Wednesday 10 February 2010

2.00 pm Time for Reflection followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions followed by SPCB Question Time

2.20 pm Preliminary Stage Debate: Ure Elder Fund Transfer and Dissolution Bill followed by Stage 1 Debate: Control of Dogs (Scotland) Bill followed by Scottish Government Debate: The Local Government Finance (Scotland) Order 2010 followed by Business Motion followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time followed by Members' Business Thursday 11 February 2010

9.15 am Parliamentary Bureau Motions followed by Stage 3 Proceedings: Home Owner and Debtor Protection (Scotland) Bill

11.40 am General Question Time 12 noon First Minister's Question Time

2.15 pm Themed Question Time Health and Wellbeing

2.55 pm Equal Opportunities Committee Debate: 3rd Report 2009: Female offenders in the criminal justice system followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time followed by Members' Business Wednesday 24 February 2010

2.30 pm Time for Reflection followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions followed by Scottish Government Business followed by Business Motion followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time followed by Members' Business Thursday 25 February 2010

9.15 am Parliamentary Bureau Motions followed by Scottish Government Business

11.40 am General Question Time

12.00 pm First Minister's Question Time

2.15 pm Themed Question Time Rural Affairs and the Environment; Justice and Law Officers

2.55 pm Scottish Government Business followed by Parliamentary Bureau Motions

5.00 pm Decision Time followed by Members' Business—[Bruce Crawford].

Motion agreed to.