Monday, October 09, 2006


Parliament returns from recess this week, for a three week sitting. Finally! Something to blog about! Tomorrow I expect the government will introduce its Criminal proceeds (Recovery) Bill, which has been hanging around in the ether for the last month. Wednesday is a Member's Day, which will see a vote on the second reading of the Manukau City Council (Control of Street Prostitution) Bill (which should be interesting). Thursday will see the release of the Auditor-General's report into the misuse of Parliamentary Services funds, and almost certainly a debate on it, despite National's claim to the contrary. Beyond that, according to the sitting programme, there are only seven more sitting weeks (and three Member's Days) until christmas.

It will be interesting to see whether the mudslinging and poisonous atmosphere which prevailed before the recess will carry over, or whether our MPs will behave themselves. Unfortunately, I expect the worst.


I haven't seen National's claims as to why there won't be a debate on the Auditor-General's report, but my guess would be that they are asserting that they won't have time on Thursday to file the request with the Speaker for there to be a snap debate. The report and response won't be tabled until 2pm, when the House sits, and requests to the speaker for such a debate under SO 381(1) have to be made to the speaker at least one hour before that time.

Posted by Graeme Edgeler : 10/09/2006 03:47:00 PM

There's nothing stopping them from filing a debate request in anticipation - or from seeking leave of the House if they can't. The real problem is likely to be knowing what they're debating over, not whether they'll be able to debate it.

Posted by Idiot/Savant : 10/09/2006 05:41:00 PM

I'm open to input from someone better acqauinted with the procedure than I, but I doubt you can file a request for an urgent debate on a matter of public importance if the matter hasn't happened, and you don't know whether it gives rise to questions of public importance. I'd suggest this is the type of situation where David McGee will advise the Speaker the requests are out of order, she follow his recommendation and then National will accuse her of bias.

And I'd say they would know what they're talking about - I don't think the content of the report will alter National's line of attack too much...

Posted by Graeme Edgeler : 10/09/2006 05:56:00 PM