Chapter Five: Notices, Motions and Inquiries

Rules of the Senate

Chapter Five: Notices, Motions and Inquiries

 

Giving Notice

Notice given orally and in writing 5-1. A Senator who wishes to move a substantive motion or raise an inquiry shall prepare a written notice and read it aloud during Routine Proceedings. The Senator shall then sign the notice and send it immediately to the Clerk at the table, who shall cause it to appear on the Order Paper and Notice Paper.
Subject of inquiry – restriction 5-2. An inquiry shall not relate to any bill or other matter that is currently an order of the day.
Notice for absent Senator 5-3. A Senator may give notice on behalf of another Senator not then present with the permission of the absent Senator. The written notice shall include the names of both Senators.
Objectionable notice 5-4. The Speaker shall not allow a notice that contains an unparliamentary expression or contravenes any rule or order of the Senate to appear on the Order Paper and Notice Paper.
 

Notice Periods

One day’s notice for certain motions

5-5. Except as otherwise provided, one day’s notice is required for any motion, including the following motions:

(a) to suspend a rule or part of a rule;
(b) for the third reading of a bill;
(c) to appoint a standing committee;
(d) to refer the subject matter of a bill to a standing or special committee;
(e) to instruct a committee;
(f) to adopt a report of a standing committee or the Committee of Selection;
(g) to adjourn the Senate to other than the next sitting day;
(h) to correct irregularities in an order, resolution or vote;
(i) to rescind a leave of absence or suspension ordered by the Senate; or
(j) any other substantive motion.

EXCEPTIONS
Rule 5-6(1): Two days’ notice for certain motions
Rule 5-7: No notice required
Rule 5-12: No motions on resolved questions, five days’ notice for rescission
Rule 8-1(2): Giving notice for emergency debate
Rule 12-32(1): No notice required for Committee of the Whole
Rule 13-3(1): Written notice of question of privilege
Rule 13-4: Question of privilege without notice

Two days’ notice for certain motions

5-6. (1) Two days’ notice is required for a motion:

(a) to amend these Rules;
(b) for an address to the Governor General not merely formal in character;
(c) for an order of the Senate for any papers or documents not relating to a bill or other matter that is an order of the day;
(d) to appoint a special committee;
(e) to adopt a report of a special committee; or
(f) for the second reading of a bill.

Two days’ notice for inquiries 5-6. (2) Two days’ notice is also required for an inquiry.
No notice required

5-7. Notice is not required for a motion:

(a) for an amendment or a subamendment;
(b) to refer a question under debate to a committee;
(c) to adjourn the consideration of a question to a certain day;
(d) for the previous question;
(e) to read the Orders of the Day;
(f) to adjourn the Senate, except in the case of an emergency debate;
(g) to adjourn a debate;
(h) to consider a Commons amendment to a public bill, either immediately or at a later time;
(i) to appoint or to order a committee to prepare the Senate’s reasons for disagreeing with a Commons amendment to a public bill;
(j) to introduce and give the first reading to a bill;
(k) to postpone, discharge or revive an order of the day;
(l) to consider at a future sitting any document that is on the table;
(m) to table papers, when proposed by the Leader of the Government or another Senator who is a minister;
(n) to reconsider, while a bill is under consideration, any element of the bill already agreed to;
(o) to resolve the Senate into a Committee of the Whole; or
(p) that is of a merely formal or uncontentious character.

 

Motions and Inquiries

Debatable motions

5-8. (1) Except as otherwise ordered by the Senate, a motion is debatable if it is:

(a) a substantive motion;
(b) to amend a motion or to amend an amendment to a motion;
(c) to adopt a report of a committee;
(d) for the second reading of a bill;
(e) to appoint a committee;
(f) to refer a question, other than a bill, to a committee;
(g) to instruct a committee;
(h) for the third reading of a bill;
(i) for an address to the Governor General not merely formal in character;
(j) to adopt any element of a bill in Committee of the Whole;
(k) to reconsider, while a bill is under consideration, any element of the bill already agreed to;
(l) to adjourn the Senate for an emergency debate;
(m) to suspend any rule of the Senate;
(n) for the previous question;
(o) to amend these Rules;
(p) for an order of the Senate for any documents not relating to a bill or other matter appearing on the Order Paper and Notice Paper; or
(q) a motion required for the good conduct of the Senate, the maintenance of its authority, the appointment or conduct of its officers, the management of its proceedings, and the fixing of its sitting days or the times of its meetings or adjournments.

Inquiries debatable 5-8. (2) An inquiry is debatable.
Non-debatable motions 5-8. (3) Except as otherwise ordered by the Senate, the question shall be put immediately on all other motions, without debate or amendment.
Preambles – restriction 5-9. Inquiries and motions, except a motion for a resolution to amend the Constitution of Canada, shall not include a preamble.
Withdrawal or modification of a motion or an inquiry 5-10. (1) A Senator who has moved a motion or presented an inquiry may, with the leave of the Senate, withdraw or modify it.
Withdrawal of notice of a motion or of an inquiry 5-10. (2) A Senator who has only given notice of a motion or of an inquiry may withdraw the notice without leave when the item is called.
Motions to be seconded 5-11. A motion that has not been seconded shall not be debated and the Speaker shall not put the question on it.
No motions on resolved questions, five days’ notice for rescission

5-12. Except as otherwise provided, a motion shall not be moved if it is the same in substance as any question that has already been adopted or defeated during the same session, unless the decision has been previously rescinded by motion following a notice of five days.

EXCEPTIONS
Rule 5-5(i): One day’s notice for certain motions
Rule 5-7(n): No notice required
Rule 10-5: Reconsideration of clauses of a bill

 

Motions to Adjourn the Senate

Motion to adjourn always in order

5-13. (1) Except as provided in subsections (2) and (5) and elsewhere in these Rules, or as otherwise ordered by the Senate, the motion “that the Senate do now adjourn” shall always be in order.

EXCEPTIONS
Rule 4-2(7): No motions during Senators’ Statements
Rule 7-3(1): Procedure for debate on motion to allocate time
Rule 7-4(1): Government order to which time is allocated
Rule 8-3(4): No motions during request for emergency debate
Rule 9-10(7): No adjournment until after deferred vote
Rule 13-6(6): Continuation of debate on motion on case of privilege beyond ordinary time of adjournment on first day of debate
Rule 16-1(4): Adjournment delayed after receipt of message
Rule 16-1(8): Message on Royal Assent

Who may move motion to adjourn 5-13. (2) A motion to adjourn the Senate may only be moved by a Senator who is recognized to speak in a debate, and may not be moved on a point of order.
Motion to adjourn put immediately

5-13. (3) Except as otherwise provided, the question on a motion to adjourn the Senate shall be put immediately, without debate or amendment.

EXCEPTION
Rule 8-4(1): Adjournment motion for emergency debate

Standing vote on motion to adjourn 5-13. (4) A standing vote on a motion to adjourn the Senate shall not be deferred and shall be taken in accordance with the ordinary procedure for determining the duration of bells.
More than one motion – restriction 5-13. (5) No other motion to adjourn the Senate shall be in order during the same sitting unless an intermediate proceeding occurred after the previous such motion.