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 printing

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 printed.

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.

Form of amending bill

10-10. (1) A bill originating in the Senate that amends any statute in whole or in part shall re-enact the whole of any affected section, subsection or other minor division and shall not ordinarily be made of clauses that only add, leave out or substitute words in the existing statute.

Typographical indications of amendments

10-10. (2) The print of such an amending bill shall contain comparative texts of the amendments and any affected portion of the statute, indicating by italics, parallel columns or any other appropriate means, the changes that would be made by the bill if enacted.

Explanatory notes on amending bill

10-10. (3) The print of such an amending bill shall also include an explanatory note outlining briefly the reasons for each amendment. Whenever practicable the explanatory note shall be printed on the right-hand page of the bill in paragraphs opposite the amendments referred to and numbered correspondingly.

Reprints of Senate bills

10-10. (4) As far as practicable, explanatory notes shall also be included in subsequent reprints of any bill.

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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