Inside Politics

7 unanimous consent motions that shut down the Commons for the summer

Despite the seemingly permanent state of partisan rancour that has permeated the precinct for the last few weeks, an eleventh hour outpouring of all-party agreement allowed MPs to speed through the last few items of legislative business on the government's agenda in record time before heading home for the summer a full three days before the parliamentary calendar officially ran out.

Here, for the record, and as duly chronicled in Hansard, are the seven motions that made it all possible:

  • That, notwithstanding any Standing or Special Order or usual practice of the House, Bill C-54, An Act to amend the Criminal Code and the National Defence Act (mental disorder), be read the third time and passed and passed on division.
  • That, notwithstanding any Standing Order or usual practice of the House, Bill S-14, An Act to amend the Corruption of Foreign Public Officials Act, be read the third time and passed.
  • That, notwithstanding any Standing or Special Order or usual practice of the House, Bill S-17, An Act to implement conventions, protocols, agreements and a supplementary convention, concluded between Canada and Namibia, Serbia, Poland, Hong Kong, Luxembourg and Switzerland, for the avoidance of double taxation and the prevention of fiscal evasion with respect to taxes, shall be deemed concurred in at the report stage and deemed read a third time and passed.
  • That, notwithstanding any Standing or Special Order or usual practice of the House, Bill S-15, An Act to amend the Canada National Parks Act and the Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Resources Accord Implementation Act and to make consequential amendments to the Canada Shipping Act, 2001, be deemed concurred in at the report stage and deemed read a third time and passed
  • That, notwithstanding any Standing or Special Order or usual practice of the House: Bill C-32, An Act to amend the Civil Marriage Act, shall be (i) deemed read a second time and referred to a Committee of the Whole; (ii) deemed considered in a Committee of the Whole and reported with the following amendment: "That Bill C-32, in clause 4, be amended by replacing line 10 on page 3 with the following: 'consent, on presentation of an order from the court or a'"; (iii) deemed concurred in at the report stage, as amended, and deemed read a third time and passed.
  • That, notwithstanding any Standing or Special Order or usual practice of the House: in order to bring full transparency and accountability to House of Commons spending, the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs be instructed to:

(i) conduct open and public hearings with a view to replace the Board of Internal Economy with an independent oversight body;

(ii) invite the Auditor General, the Clerk and the Chief Financial Officer of the House of Commons to participate fully in these hearings;

(iii) study the practices of provincial and territorial legislatures, as well as other jurisdictions and Westminster-style Parliaments in order to compare and contrast their administrative oversight;

(iv) propose modifications to the Parliament of Canada Act, the Financial Administration Act, the Auditor General Act and any other acts as deemed necessary;

(v) propose any necessary modifications to the administrative policies and practices of the House of Commons;

(vi) examine the subject-matter of the motions, standing in the name of the Member for Papineau, placed on the Order Paper on June 10, 2013;

(vii) report its findings to the House no later than December 2, 2013, in order to have any proposed changes to expense disclosure and reporting in place for the beginning of the next fiscal year;

when the Standing Committee on Procedure and House Affairs meets pursuant to the order of reference set out in this Order, one Member who is not a member of a recognized party shall be allowed to participate in the hearings as a temporary, non-voting member of that Committee.

  • That, notwithstanding any Standing or Special Order or usual practice of the House: (i) on Tuesday, June 18, 2013, the House shall adjourn at 12 midnight or after each of Bills C-54, S-14, S-15, C-32 and S-17 have been read the third time, whichever comes first; and (ii) upon the adjournment of the House on Tuesday, June 18, 2013, the House shall stand adjourned until Monday, September 16, 2013, provided that, for the purposes of any Standing Order, the House shall be deemed to stand adjourned pursuant to Standing Order 28. 

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