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Rules of the Senate

Chapter Ten: Public Bills

Stages of the Legislative Process

Pro forma bill

10-1. A pro forma bill shall be introduced and receive first reading after the Speech from the Throne has been read to open a session.

Right to introduce a bill

10-2. A Senator may, as of right, introduce a bill in the Senate.

Introduction, first reading and publishing

10-3. The introduction and first reading of a bill are decided without debate or vote. Immediately after the first reading, the bill shall be published.

Second reading

10-4. The principle of a bill is usually debated on second reading.

Reconsideration of clauses of a bill

10-5. At any time before a bill is passed, a Senator may move for the reconsideration of any clause already carried.

Third reading

10-6. When the Senate has read a bill the third time, the bill is passed and shall not be further debated or amended.

Supply Bills

Royal Recommendation

10-7. The Senate shall not proceed with a bill appropriating public money unless the appropriation has been recommended by the Governor General.

Constitution Act, 1867, section 54

No extraneous clauses

10-8. A bill of aid or supply shall not be amended to include any clause that is foreign to or different from the matter of the bill.

Senate Bills

No duplication of Senate bills

10-9. When a bill originating in the Senate has been passed or defeated, no new bill with the same object shall originate in the Senate during the same session.

Non-substantive corrections to a bill

10-10. (1) The Law Clerk may, as required at any stage in the legislative process, make minor non-substantive corrections to a bill, including corrections to:

(a) remove technical, typographical, grammatical or punctuation errors;
(b) modify the table of provisions, the summary or the marginal notes to take into account substantive amendments made to the bill during the legislative process;
(c) renumber provisions as a consequence of amendments made to the bill during the legislative process;
(d) update cross-references as a consequence of corrections made under paragraphs (a) or (c);
(e) modify, add or remove headings as a consequence of amendments made to the bill during the legislative process, to ensure that the headings correspond with the provisions that follow them; and
(f) revise or remove coordinating amendments as a consequence of the enactment of any provision referred to in those amendments.

Report of corrections

10-10. (2) At the request of the Clerk, the Law Clerk shall report any corrections made under subsection (1) to the Clerk.

Pre-Study of Commons Bills

Referral of subject matter of bill to committee

10-11. (1) The subject matter of a bill originating in the House of Commons may be referred to a standing committee for study at any time before the bill is received in the Senate.

Notice of motion to refer the subject matter of a bill

10-11. (2) Notice of motion for such referral may be given either:

(a) by the Leader or the Deputy Leader of the Government at any time during a sitting; or
(b) by any Senator at the appropriate time during Routine Proceedings.

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