Provisional Legislative Council

PLC Paper No. CB(2) 15/97-98

Ref : PLC/HC/4

House Committee of the Provisional Legislative Council

Minutes of the meeting held at the Legislative Council Chamber at 2:30 pm on Friday, 4 July 1997

Members present:

Dr the Honourable LEONG Che-hung (Chairman)
The Honourable WONG Siu-yee
The Honourable TIEN Pei-chun, James
The Honourable HO Sai-chu
The Honourable HO Sing-tin, Edward
Dr the Honourable HO Chung-tai
The Honourable NG Leung-sing
Prof the Honourable NG Ching-fai
The Honourable LI Ka-cheung, Eric
The Honourable LEE Kai-ming
The Honourable LEE Peng-fei, Allen
The Honourable Mrs TU, Elsie
The Honourable Mrs CHOW LIANG Shuk-yee, Selina
The Honourable Mrs LAM, Peggy
The Honourable WU, Henry
The Honourable NGAI Shiu-kit
The Honourable TANG Ying-yen, Henry
The Honourable ARCULLI, Ronald
The Honourable MA Fung-kwok
The Honourable TSO WONG Man-yin
The Honourable LEUNG Chun-ying
The Honourable Mrs LEUNG LAU Yau-fun, Sophie
The Honourable HUI Yin-fat
The Honourable CHAN Yuen-han
The Honourable CHAN Wing-chan
The Honourable CHENG Kai-nam
The Honourable FUNG Kin-kee, Frederick
The Honourable WONG Wang-fat, Andrew
Dr the Honourable WONG Yu-hong, Philip
The Honourable WONG Ying-ho, Kennedy
The Honourable YOUNG, Howard
The Honourable YEUNG Chun-kam
The Honourable YEUNG Yiu-chung
The Honourable CHIM Pui-chung
The Honourable LIU Sing-lee, Bruce
The Honourable LAU Kong-wah
The Honourable Mrs LAU Kin-yee, Miriam
The Honourable LAU Hon-chuen, Ambrose
The Honourable CHOY Kan-pui
The Honourable CHENG Ming-fun, Paul
The Honourable CHENG Yiu-tong
The Honourable FOK Tsun-ting, Timothy
The Honourable KAN Fook-yee
The Honourable LO Suk-ching
Dr the Honourable LAW Cheung-kwok
The Honourable TAM Yiu-chung

Members absent :

The Honourable IP Kwok-him (Deputy Chairman)
The Honourable CHU Yu-lin, David
The Honourable LI Kwok-po, David
The Honourable YUEN Mo
The Honourable CHEUNG Hon-chung
The Honourable MOK Ying-fan
The Honourable CHAN Choi-hi
The Honourable CHAN Kam-lam
The Honourable TSANG Yok-sing
The Honourable LAU Wong-fat
Dr the Honourable TANG Siu-tong
The Honourable NGAN Kam-chuen

Clerk in attendance:

Mrs Justina LAM Clerk to the House Committee

Staff in attendance :

Mr Ricky C C FUNG Secretary General
Mr Jimmy MA Legal Adviser
Mr LAW Kam-sang Deputy Secretary General
Mr LEE Yu-sang Senior Assistant Legal Adviser
Ms Pauline NG Assistant Secretary General 1
Mr Ray CHAN Assistant Secretary General 3
Ms Bernice WONG Assistant Legal Adviser 1
Miss Anita HO Assistant Legal Adviser 2
Miss Connie FUNG Assistant Legal Adviser 3
Mr Arthur CHEUNG Assistant Legal Adviser 5
Ms LEUNG Siu-kum Chief Assistant Secretary (Complaints)
Ms Kathleen LAU Chief Public Information Officer
Mrs Betty LEUNG Chief Assistant Secretary (2)3
Mrs Percy MAChief Assistant Secretary (2)5
Mrs Eleanor CHOW Senior Assistant Secretary (2)8

I.Opening remark

The Chairman advised members that the President had directed that a formal ceremony be conducted on 9 July 1997 at 12:00 noon in the Legislative Council Chamber to enable Members to sign the oath book. The ceremony would not be part of the proceedings of the Council meeting to be held at 2:30 p.m. on the same day. The Secretariat would issue a notice to Members on details.

II.Confirmation of the minutes of the 10th meeting held on 21 June 1997

(PLC Paper No. 502/96-97)

2.The minutes were confirmed.

III.Matters arising

IV.Business arising from previous Council meetings

3.Members noted that no item needed to be discussed under these two items.

V.Business for the Council meeting on 9 July 1997

  1. Bills

    4.The Chairman said that no formal notice had been received of presentation of bills and resumption of debate on the second reading of bills for the Council meeting on 9 July 1997.

  2. Motions

    1. Motion on "Increasing the standard rate under the Comprehensive Social Security Assistance Scheme for the elderly"

      5.The Chairman said that Mr CHAN Choi-hi had given notice to resume debate on the above motion.

      6.In response to Mr Howard YOUNG, the Chairman said that the mover of the motion would have a total of 15 minutes for his or her introductory speech and final reply. As Mr CHAN had already delivered his introductory speech at the meeting on 17 May 1997, he could use the balance of the 15 minutes to give a final reply at the meeting on 9 July 1997.

    2. Motion on "Resolving the problems left by the previous Government which affect the livelihood of the populace"

      7.The Chairman said that members had noted the wording of the motion to be moved by Miss CHAN Yuen-han at the last meeting. He added that Mr KAN Fook-yee had given notice to move an amendment to the motion. The wording of the amendment was tabled at the meeting.

VI.Business for the Council meeting on 16 July 1997

  1. Questions

    8.The Chairman said that only two questions (tabled at the meeting) requiring oral reply had so far been registered for the Council meeting on 16 July 1997. According to the House Rules, no more than 20 questions should be asked at a Council meeting and, of these, no more than six should seek oral reply. He advised members that the deadline for giving formal notice of questions scheduled for the meeting on 16 July was 7 July 1997.

  2. Bills

    9.The Chairman said that no formal notice had been received of presentation of bills and resumption of second reading debate on bills for the Council meeting on 16 July 1997.

  3. Motion

    Motion on "Reduction of rates percentage charge"

    10.The Chairman said that only one application for a debating slot was received by the deadline. He referred members to the wording of the motion to be moved by Mr NGAN Kam-chuen.

    11.The Chairman advised members that the deadline for giving notice of amendments, if any, to the motion was 9 July 1997.


Report of the Working Group on Rules of Procedure

12.Mrs Selina CHOW, Convenor of the Working Group on Rules of Procedure (the Working Group), said that it was the view of the Working Group that Panels should be accountable to the Council and should make periodic reports to it. A consultation paper on "Formation of Panels" would be issued to members to seek their views on whether Panels should be set up under the Council as soon as practicable and if so, their terms of reference as well as the number of such Panels. As the Working Group intended to seek the Council's approval of its recommendations in the form of a motion on 23 July 1997, and in order to comply with the requisite notice requirement for moving the motion, members were requested to give their views by 7 July 1997.

13.Members agreed that as Panels played an important role in monitoring and examining Government policies, a decision should be made on the matter as soon as possible.

VIII.Any other business

  1. Seating arrangement for Members at Council meetings

    14.The Chairman said that an election would be held following the resignation of Miss Maria TAM. He sought members' view on whether the existing seating arrangement should be revised. After discussion, members agreed that the existing criteria for determining the seating arrangement should remain unchanged, and that any new Members subsequently elected should be seated after existing Members. In case more than one new Member were elected on the same day, the order of their seating arrangement should be in accordance with the number of strokes in the characters of the Member's name in Chinese, and the Member whose name had the least number of strokes would be seated in front of the other Member(s).

  2. Questions

    15.The Chairman advised members to pay attention to the form and content of questions asked at Council meetings e.g. questions should be precise and to the point, and that questions requiring very extensive research efforts for replies such as those requiring statistics should more appropriately be asked as questions seeking written replies. In addition, multiple questions within a single supplementary question should be avoided.

  3. Attendance and quorum

    16.The Chairman said that members should make their best efforts to attend Council and committee meetings. Members noted that the quorum of the Council was no less than 30 Members including the President.

    17.The meeting ended at 2:55 p.m.

Provisional Legislative Council Secretariat
9 July 1997