Is night falling on Daylight Saving Bill?

  • 19 January 2012
  • From the section UK Politics
  • comments

The forces of darkness (pun intended) seem to be massing against Rebecca Harris's Daylight Saving Bill (see earlier posting).

Earlier this week I thought it might be able to clear the Commons; now I think its prospects depend on 100 MPs being prepared to force a vote. There are now 11 pages of amendments to be put at Friday's report stage, and, ominously, many of them bear the name of the arch-terminator of private members' bills, the Conservative Christopher Chope.

Then there's Jacob Rees-Mogg's proposal for an independent Somerset time zone, and Philip Davies' proposal to call it the "Berlin Time" Bill.

And I gather most SNP MPs will be around tomorrow to put their concerns about the implications for Scotland. The bill's best prospect of getting through the Commons and being sent on to the Lords would be if the chair allowed a closure motion - which is unlikely to happen much before 1pm.

That in turn threatens the widely-supported Live Music Bill - although it is possible to rush a bill through its remaining stages in remarkably little time, if no-one objects. And it seems to spell certain doom for Chris Chope's Local Government (Review of Decisions) Bill - although given that he's the one putting down amendments on Daylight Saving, I assume he's prepared to accept that as collateral damage. Perhaps the government has cooled over his modest proposal to provide a way of overturning such things as over-cautious health and safety rulings.

So watch out for a day of elaborate tactical games as this round of private members' bills draws to a close.

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