Standing Committee on Rules, Procedures and the Rights of Parliament

Report of the committee

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

The Standing Committee on Rules, Procedures and the Rights of Parliament has the honour to present its

SEVENTH REPORT

Pursuant to rule 12-7(2)(a), your committee recommends that the Rules of the Senate be amended by:

1. replacing rule 3-6(2) by the following:

Adjournment extended

3-6. (2) Whenever the Senate stands adjourned, if the Speaker is satisfied that the public interest does not require the Senate to meet at the date and time stipulated in the adjournment order, the Speaker shall, after consulting the Leader of the Government, the Leader of the Opposition, and the leader or facilitator of any other recognized party or recognized parliamentary group, or their designates, determine an appropriate later date or time for the next sitting.”;

2. replacing rule 4-2(8)(a) by the following:

Extending time for Senators’ Statements

4-2. (8)(a) At the request of a whip or the designated representative of a recognized parliamentary group, the Speaker shall, at an appropriate time during Senators’ Statements, seek leave of the Senate to extend Statements. If leave is granted, Senators’ Statements shall be extended by no more than 30 minutes.”;

3. replacing rule 4-3(1) by the following:

Tributes

4-3. (1) At the request of the Leader of the Government, the Leader of the Opposition, or the leader or facilitator of any other recognized party or recognized parliamentary group, the period for Senators’ Statements shall be extended by no more than 15 minutes for the purpose of paying tribute to a current or former Senator.”;

4. replacing rule 6-3(1)(a) by the following:

Leaders

(a) the Leader of the Government and the Leader of the Opposition shall be allowed unlimited time for debate; and the leader or facilitator of any other recognized party or recognized parliamentary group shall be permitted up to 45 minutes for debate;”;

5. replacing rule 6-5(1)(b) by the following:

(b) the time remaining, not to exceed 15 minutes, if the Senator who yielded is the Leader of the Government, the Leader of the Opposition, or the leader or facilitator of any other recognized party or recognized parliamentary group.”;

6. replacing rule 7-3(1)(f)(ii) by the following:

(ii) the leader or facilitator of any other recognized party or recognized parliamentary group may speak for up to 15 minutes;”;

7. replacing rule 12-5(c) by the following:

(c) the leader or facilitator of any other recognized party or recognized parliamentary group,  or a designate, for a change of members of that party or group.”;

8. replacing rule 12-8(2) by the following:

User fee proposals

12-8. (2) When the Leader or Deputy Leader of the Government tables a user fee proposal, it is deemed referred to the standing or special committee designated by the Leader or Deputy Leader of the Government following consultations with the Leader or Deputy Leader of the Opposition, and the leader or facilitator of any other recognized party or recognized parliamentary group.”;

9. replacing the definition of “Deputy Leader of the Government” in Appendix I by the following:

“Deputy Leader of the Government

The Senator who acts as the second to the Leader of the Government and who is normally responsible for the management of Government business on the floor of the Senate. The Deputy Leader is also generally responsible for negotiating the daily agenda of business with the Opposition and other recognized parties and recognized parliamentary groups.  In the absence of the Deputy Leader, the Government Leader may designate another Senator to perform the role. The full title is “Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate”. (Leader adjoint du gouvernement)”;

10. replacing the definition of “Deputy Leader of the Opposition” in Appendix I by the following:

“Deputy Leader of the Opposition

The Senator who acts as the second to the Leader of the Opposition and who is normally responsible for negotiating the daily agenda of business on the floor of the Senate with the Government and other recognized parties and recognized parliamentary groups. In the absence of the Deputy Leader, the Opposition Leader may designate another Senator to perform the role. The full title is “Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Senate”. (Leader adjoint de l’opposition)”;

11. replacing the definition of “Leader of a recognized party in the Senate” in Appendix I by the following:

“Leader or facilitator of a recognized party or recognized parliamentary group

The Senator who heads a group of Senators recognized as a party or a parliamentary group under the Rules. (Leader ou facilitateur d’un parti reconnu ou d’un groupe parlementaire reconnu)”;

12.   replacing the definition of “Leadership” in Appendix I by the following:

“Leadership

A term commonly used to refer to various positions in the Senate, notably the leaders or facilitators of the recognized parties or recognized parliamentary groups, their deputies, their designates and the whips. (Dirigeants)”;

13. replacing the definition of “Recognized party” in Appendix I by the following:

“Recognized party or recognized parliamentary group

A recognized party in the Senate is composed of at least nine senators who are members of the same political party, which is registered under the Canada Elections Act, or has been registered under the Act within the past 15 years.  A recognized parliamentary group in the Senate is one to which at least nine senators belong and which is formed for parliamentary purposes.  A senator may belong to either one recognized party or one recognized parliamentary group.  Each recognized party or recognized group has a leader or facilitator in the Senate. (Parti reconnu ou groupe parlementaire reconnu)”;

14. adding the following new definitions to Appendix I in alphabetical order:

(a)  Facilitator of a recognized parliamentary group

See “Leader or facilitator of a recognized party or recognized parliamentary group”. (Facilitateur d’un groupe parlementaire reconnu)”; and

(b)  Recognized parliamentary group

See “Recognized party or recognized parliamentary group”. (Groupe parlementaire reconnu)”;

15. by deleting the definition of “Leader of any other recognized party in the Senate” in Appendix I; and

16.  updating all cross references in the Rules, including the lists of exceptions, accordingly.

Respectfully submitted,

JOAN FRASER

Chair