Chapter 3 - Rules of Debate
Member Recognized by the Speaker
17(1) Every member desiring to speak shall rise in his or her place and address the Speaker.
(2) When two or more members rise to speak, the Speaker shall call upon the member who, in the Speaker's opinion, first rose but a motion may be made that any member who has risen "be now heard" and the motion shall be put immediately without debate or amendment.
Member Withdrawing from Debate
18 If anything shall come into question concerning the conduct, election, or right of any member to hold a seat, that member may make a statement and shall then withdraw from the debate.
Member Called to Order During Debate
19 A member shall be called to order by the Speaker if that member:
(a) speaks twice to a question, except in the case of a mover in concluding debate, or in explanation of a material part of a speech in which that member may have been misunderstood, in which case the member shall not introduce new matter;
(b) speaks to matters other than
(i) the question under discussion, or
(ii) a motion or amendment the member intends to move, or
(iii) a question of privilege or a point of order;
(c) persists in needless repetition or raises matters that have been decided during the current Session;
(d) in the opinion of the Speaker, refers at length to debates of the current Session or reads unnecessarily from Hansard or from any other document, but a member may quote relevant passages for the purposes of a complaint about something said or of a reply to an alleged misrepresentation;
(e) reflects upon any vote of the Assembly unless it is that member's intention to move that it be rescinded;
(f) refers to any matter that is pending in a court or before a judge for judicial determination where any person may be prejudiced in such matter by the reference;
(g) imputes false or unavowed motives to another member;
(h) charges another member with uttering a deliberate falsehood;
(i) uses abusive or insulting language, including sexist or violent language, in a context likely to create disorder;
(j) speaks disrespectfully of Her Majesty or of any of the Royal Family; or
(k) introduces any matter in debate that, in the opinion of the Speaker, offends the practices and precedents of the Assembly.
Time Limits During Debate
20(1) Unless otherwise provided for in these Standing Orders, when the Speaker is in the Chair, no member, except a member moving a motion and the member speaking in reply immediately thereafter, shall speak for more than twenty minutes.
(2) During debate on the motion for second reading of a main appropriation bill, no member, except a member moving a motion and the member speaking in reply immediately thereafter, shall speak for more than forty minutes.
Right of Reply and Closing Debate
21(1) A reply shall be allowed to a member who has moved a substantive motion, but not to the mover of an amendment, the previous question or any instruction to a Committee.
(2) When no further members appear to be rising to participate in debate on a motion, the Speaker shall state "Are you prepared for the question?" and, if a member should rise who has the right to participate in the debate, the Speaker shall recognize that member.
(3) When the mover of the original motion rises to speak in reply, the Speaker shall inform the Assembly that the reply would close debate and any member who has not spoken and who wishes to speak shall be allowed to do so before the reply.
Point of Order and Question of Privilege
22(1) A member speaking, if called to order by the Speaker or if a point of order or a question of privilege is raised by another member, shall sit down while the point of order or question of privilege is being stated, after which the member may resume his or her address or make a statement relating to the point of order or question of privilege.
(2) The Speaker may permit debate on a point of order or question of privilege before giving a decision but the debate must be strictly relevant to the point of order or question of privilege raised.
Naming a Member
23(1) If a member, on being called to order for an offence against any Standing Order, persists in the offence, the Speaker may direct that member to discontinue speaking and to sit down. If the member refuses, the Speaker shall name that member to the Assembly.
(2) A member who has been named shall be suspended from the Assembly for the remainder of the sitting day. A motion without notice may be moved to increase the length of the suspension of a named member and the motion shall be decided without debate or amendment.
(3) If any member suspended from the service of the Assembly refuses to obey the direction of the Speaker, the Speaker shall call to the attention of the Assembly that force is necessary in order to compel obedience.
(4) The decision of the Speaker is final.
Debatable and Non-debatable Motions
24(1) A motion is debatable which is:
(a) standing on the Order Paper;
(b) for concurrence in a report of a Committee;
(c) for the previous question;
(d) for the Second Reading of a bill;
(e) for the Third Reading of a bill;
(f) for the withdrawal of a bill;
(g) for the adjournment of the ordinary business of the Assembly when made for the purpose of discussing a matter of urgent public importance;
(h) for the adoption, in Committee of the Whole, of the item under consideration;
(i) for the appointment of a Committee;
(j) for reference to a Committee of any matter;
(k) for the suspension of any Standing Order;
(l) for the Production of Papers; or
(m) required for the observance of the proprieties of the Assembly, the maintenance of its authority, the appointment or conduct of its officers, the management of its business, the arrangement of its proceedings, the correctness of its records, the fixing of its sitting days or the times of its meeting or adjournment.
(2) All other motions, including motions for the adjournment of the Assembly or of debate, shall be decided without debate or amendment.
25(1) A division shall be called
(a) if two members rise in their places and say "division"; or
(b) if the Speaker is unable to ascertain the count from the voice vote.
(2) When a division is called for, either before the question is put or after the voice vote, the Speaker shall immediately ring the division bells.
(3) Once the bells have started ringing, no further debate shall be permitted.
(4) No sooner than two minutes nor longer than five minutes thereafter, the Speaker may again state the question following which the Speaker shall order the taking of the division.
(5) No member shall enter or leave the Assembly during the final statement of the question, nor then leave the Assembly until the division has been fully taken and the result announced.
(6) Each member present shall vote unless he or she has a direct pecuniary interest.
(7) Upon a division, the Yeas and Nays shall be entered in the Votes and Proceedings.