I am now prepared to give my ruling on report stage of Bill C-5, an act respecting the protection of wildlife species at risk in Canada.
Given the rather large number of motions on the notice paper, I believe it would be appropriate to explain my ruling on the report stage and to give some clarification to the House regarding the selection process used for motions.
Hon. members will remember that, on March 21, 2001, I made a statement in which I explained a few guiding principles that help the Chair select report stage motions.
I encouraged all members and all parties:
--to avail themselves fully of the opportunity to propose amendments during committee stage so that the report stage can return to the purpose for which it was created, namely for the House to consider the committee report and the work that the committee has done, and to do such further work as it deems necessary to complete detailed consideration of this bill.
In terms of the legislative process, the work on Bill C-5 done by the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development provides an excellent example of the type of study that should take place on major bills. Bill C-5 was given extensive consideration. The committee heard from some 150 witnesses over 27 meetings and then proceeded to 15 meetings during which the bill was studied clause by clause. Approximately 360 motions of amendment were proposed; 123 motions from all parties were adopted and reported to the House.
There are currently 138 motions in amendment on the notice paper and I must determine which ones must be selected for review at report stage. After examining these 138 motions, I came to the following conclusions.
Motion No. 110 cannot be proposed to the House because it is not accompanied by a recommendation of the governor general. Standing Order 76.1(3) requires that notice of such a recommendation be given no later than the sitting day before the beginning of report stage consideration of the bill.
Motions Nos. 40 to 42, 45 to 47, 58 to 65, 81 to 83, 87 to 89, 91 to 93, and 123 to 125 will not be selected as the Chair judges them to be of a repetitive nature as expressed in the note to Standing Order 76.1(5) regarding the selection of motions and amendments at report stage.
As for the other motions, some may be deemed to be technical changes to clarify the amendments proposed by the committee, or to bring them more in line with the standards of legislative drafting. These motions will be selected.
There are many motions that propose to make further changes to some substantial modifications by the committee or to reject the committee's modifications. While I had some reservations concerning these motions--arguably these issues ought to have been resolved in the committee--I have had to conclude that they are entirely in keeping with past practice.
Our practice as well at the practice of the United Kingdom dictates that the very purpose of report stage is to allow the House to consider the committee report and to do such further work as it deems necessary. Accordingly, these motions will be selected.
Finally, there are motions similar to those that were rejected by the committee. Usually, such motions are not selected, because they would generate discussions that have already taken place in committee. However, the note in the Standing Orders allows the Speaker to select these motions if he deems that they are of such importance that they deserve to be examined again at report stage. I believe that these motions respect that criterion and therefore they will be selected for the debate.
The selected motions will be placed into five groups for debate.
The first group will deal with the issue of compensation. It will be composed of Motions Nos. 1, 12, 13, 28, 103 to 108, 111, 121 and 128.
The second group will deal with timeframes and agreements between the federal government and the provinces and will include Motions Nos. 2, 11, 23, 35, 39, 44, 48, 49, 51 to 57, 67, 74, 78, 80, 84, 86, 90, 94 to 102, 112, 113 and 122.
The third group will deal with geographical and biological species, the interim recovery plans, the schedules which contain the list of extirpated, endangered and threatened species, and certain technical amendments. It will be composed of Motions Nos. 3 to 5, 7 to 10, 14, 15, 19, 30, 32, 34, 36, 50, 66, 68 to 71, 73, 77, 79, 115, 119, 120, and 134 to 138.
The fourth group will deal with consultations, the registry and the national aboriginal committee. It will include Motions Nos. 6, 16, 17, 20, 24, 25, 29, 72, 76, 114, 126, 127 and 130.
The fifth group will deal with the issue of ministerial discretion, delegation, agreements and permits, and orders versus regulations. It will be composed of Motions Nos. 18, 21, 22, 26, 27, 31, 33, 37, 38, 43, 75, 85, 109, 116 to 118, 129, and 131 to 133.
The voting patterns for the motions within each group are available at the Table. For those members who are unable to write all the numbers down quickly enough, they are there too.
The Chair will signal to the House the applicable procedure for each vote.
I shall now propose Motions Nos. 1, 12, 13, 28, 103 to 108, 111, 121 and 128 in Group No. 1 to the House.