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Business Bulletin No. 88 / 2003

Thursday 12th June 2003



Members' Business Debates – A Reminder

Members’ Business debates will normally follow decision time on Wednesday and Thursday afternoons, and will last for 45 minutes.

The member moving the Members’ Business motion will be allowed seven minutes at the start of the debate. The timing will not begin until the member begins to speak.

The Minister responding to the motion will be allowed seven minutes at the end of the debate.

It is helpful if members who wish to speak in the general part of the debate inform the member who is leading the debate and the Parliamentary Business Team in advance of the debate.

The Presiding Officer will, as in any other debate, select members to speak.

Members are reminded to ensure that their contribution is relevant and in keeping with the spirit of the motion being debated.

Members are also reminded that motions to be debated as Members’ Business are selected against the following criteria—

  • Motions will normally have an explicit local or regional dimension, or raise issues of national policy in a local or regional context and have cross party support; and

  • As the main purpose of Members’ Business debates is to provide an opportunity for members to raise particular issues for debate in the Chamber, motions should not "call upon" anybody to undertake specific actions or to take or reverse particular decisions. "Considers" or "believes" that specific action should be taken would be acceptable.