LC Paper No. CB(2) 259/98-99
Ref : CB2/H/5
House Committee of the Legislative Council
Minutes of the 7th meeting
held in the Legislative Council Chamber
at 2:30 pm on Friday, 11 September 1998
Members present :
Dr Hon LEONG Che-hung, JP (Chairman)
Dr Hon YEUNG Sum (Deputy Chairman)
Hon Kenneth TING Woo-shou, JP
Hon James TIEN Pei-chun, JP
Hon David CHU Yu-lin
Hon HO Sai-chu, JP
Hon Cyd HO Sau-lan
Hon Edward HO Sing-tin, JP
Hon Albert HO Chun-yan
Hon Michael HO Mun-ka
Dr Hon Raymond HO Chung-tai, JP
Hon LEE Wing-tat
Hon Martin LEE Chu-ming, SC, JP
Hon LEE Kai-ming, JP
Hon Fred LI Wah-ming
Dr Hon LUI Ming-wah, JP
Hon NG Leung-sing
Prof Hon NG Ching-fai
Hon Margaret NG Ngoi-yee
Hon Mrs Selina CHOW LIANG Shuk-yee, JP
Hon Ronald ARCULLI, JP
Hon MA Fung-kwok
Hon CHEUNG Man-kwong
Hon Ambrose CHEUNG Wing-sum, JP
Hon HUI Cheung-ching
Hon CHAN Kwok-keung
Hon Bernard CHAN
Hon CHAN Wing-chan
Hon LEUNG Yiu-chung
Hon Gary CHENG Kai-nam
Hon Andrew WONG Wang-fat, JP
Hon Jasper TSANG Yok-sing, JP
Hon Howard YOUNG, JP
Hon YEUNG Yiu-chung
Hon LAU Chin-shek, JP
Hon LAU Kong-wah
Hon LAU Wong-fat, GBS, JP
Hon Ambrose LAU Hon-chuen, JP
Hon Emily LAU Wai-hing, JP
Hon CHOY So-yuk
Hon SZETO Wah
Hon LAW Chi-kwong, JP
Hon TAM Yiu-chung, JP
Members absent :
Hon LEE Cheuk-yan
Hon Eric LI Ka-cheung, JP
Dr Hon David LI Kwok-po, JP
Hon James TO Kun-sun
Hon Christine LOH Kung-wai
Hon CHAN Yuen-han
Hon CHAN Kam-lam
Hon Mrs Sophie LEUNG LAU Yau-fun, JP
Hon SIN Chung-kai
Dr Hon Philip WONG Yu-hong
Hon WONG Yung-kan
Hon Mrs Miriam LAU Kin-yee, JP
Hon Andrew CHENG Kar-foo
Hon Timothy FOK Tsun-ting, JP
Clerk in attendance :
Staff in attendance :
- Mrs Justina LAM
- Clerk to the House Committee
- Mr Ricky C C FUNG, JP
- Secretary General
- Mr Jimmy MA, JP
- Legal Adviser
- Mr LAW Kam-sang, JP
- Deputy Secretary General
- Mr LEE Yu-sung
- Senior Assistant Legal Adviser
- Ms Pauline NG
- Assistant Secretary General 1
- Mr Ray CHAN
- Assistant Secretary General 3
- Mr Arthur CHEUNG
- Assistant Legal Adviser 5
- Mrs Anna LO
- Chief Assistant Secretary (Complaints)
- Mr Simon WONG
- Chief Public Information Officer (Acting)
- Mrs Betty LEUNG
- Chief Assistant Secretary (3)1
- Miss Mary SO
- Senior Assistant Secretary (2)8
I. Confirmation of minutes of the 6th meeting held on 4 September 1998
(LC Paper No. CB(2) 226/98-99)
1 The minutes were confirmed.
II. Matters arising
Report by the Chairman on his meeting with the Chief Secretary for Administration (CS)
2 The Chairman said that CS had undertaken to provide a list of the legislative proposals to be introduced into the Council to enable Members to make suggestions on priority.
3 The Chairman urged members to keep their oral questions short and to the point, otherwise after the Member and Bureau Secretary had respectively read out the question and the reply, there would be little time left for supplementary questions.
4 Mr Ronald ARCULLI added that supplementary questions should also be precise and to the point.
5 Mr Fred LI said that an oral question should at the most contain three parts. Miss Emily LAU shared Mr LI's view and added that although the Rules of Procedure did not stipulate a time limit for oral questions, the usual practice, as stated in the House Rules, was for a 15-minute time limit to be applied to each oral question.
6 Dr YEUNG Sum suggested and members agreed that an oral question should not contain more than three parts.
7 Mr Edward HO suggested that in the case where a lot of information needed to be covered in an answer, the Administration should consider whether some of the information could be provided in a written reply to Members.
8 The Chairman said that he would ask CS to remind Bureau Secretaries to also be succinct in their replies to Members' oral questions.
9 The Chairman further urged members not to revise the wording of a motion after the deadline for notice, as this would delay the circulation of the wording of the motion to other Members.
III. Business arising from previous Council meetings
(a)Legal Service Division's report on bills referred to the House Committee in accordance with Rule 54(4)
Human Reproductive Technology Bill
(LC Paper No. LS 27/98-99)
10 Referring to the paper, the Legal Adviser said that the objects of the Bill were to bring the following under statutory regulation -
- the provision of reproductive technology (RT) procedures;
- the conducting of embryo research;
- the handling, storing or disposing of a gamete (i.e. a sexual reproductive cell) or embryo used in connection with a RT procedure or embryo research; and
- surrogacy arrangements, in particular to prohibit surrogacy arrangements on a commercial basis.
11 As the Bill raised important social, moral, ethical and legal issues, the Legal Adviser said that members might wish to form a Bills Committee to study the Bill. Members agreed. The following members agreed to join the Bills Committee: Dr LAW Chi-kwong, Dr LEONG Che-hung, Mr Michael HO Mun-ka (as advised by Mr Fred LI), Mrs Sophie LEUNG LAU Yau-fun (as advised by Mr Ronald ARCULLI) and Miss CHAN Yuen-han (as advised by Mr CHAN Wing-chan).
(b) Legal Service Division's report on subsidiary legislation tabled in Council on 9 September 1998 (gazetted on
4 September 1998)
(LC Paper No. LS 28/98-99)
12 The Legal Adviser said that the report covered four items of subsidiary legislation gazetted on 4 September 1998. Referring to the Road Traffic (Construction and Maintenance of Vehicles) (Amendment) (No. 3) Regulation 1998, the Legal Adviser explained that the Amendment Regulation, made under the Road Traffic Ordinance, sought to extend the safety features introduced by the Road Traffic (Construction and Maintenance of Vehicles (Amendment) Regulation 1997 to buses and light buses registered before 1 May 1997.
13 As regards the Revised Edition of the Laws (Rectification of Errors) Order 1998 made under the Revised Edition of the Laws Ordinance 1965, the Legal Adviser said that the Order sought to rectify a number of clerical errors appearing in the revised edition of various ordinances. The rectification was not intended to make any changes to the effect of any of the affected provisions.
14 On the Volunteer and Naval Volunteer Pensions Ordinance (Amendment of Schedules) Order 1998 made under the Volunteer and Naval Volunteer Pensions Ordinance, the Legal Adviser said that the Order sought to increase the rates for the payment of pensions, gratuities and other allowances in connection with the disablement or death of members of the volunteer forces who fought in the defence of Hong Kong in the Second World War. The increases were made having regard to the annual Civil Service pension increase of 5.4% for 1998-99.
15 Regarding the Barristers Disciplinary Tribunal Proceedings (Amendment) Rules 1998 made under the Legal Practitioners Ordinance, the Legal Adviser said that these Rules required the Convenor of the Barristers Disciplinary Tribunal to notify the respondent, in addition to the applicant, about the constitution of the Tribunal. The chairman of the Tribunal should then inform both parties of its membership and the particulars of its first and all subsequent hearings.
16 Members did not raise any queries on the four items of subsidiary legislation covered in the paper.
17 The Chairman advised members that ordinary Council business would not normally be dealt with at the Council meeting on 7 October 1998 because of the Chief Executive's Policy Address. The deadline for amendments to, or extension of the scrutiny period of, the subsidiary legislation gazetted on 7, 21 and 28 August 1998 and 4 September 1998 would be the Council meeting on 30 September 1998. He added that the deadlines for giving notice of amendments, if any, and extension of scrutiny period to 14 October 1998 were 23 and 25 September 1998 respectively.
IV. Further business for the Council meeting on 16 September 1998
(LC Paper No. CB(3) 232/98-99)
18 Members noted that 19 questions (five oral and 14 written) had been scheduled.
19 In reply to Miss Emily LAU, the Chairman explained that there would only be five oral questions because a Member concerned had withdrawn his oral question. As the withdrawal took place after the deadline for giving notice of questions, the vacant slot could not be taken up by another Member.
V. Business for the Council meeting on 23 September 1998
(LC Paper No. CB(3) 233/98-99)
20 Members noted the revised list of six oral and 14 written questions (tabled at the meeting), tentatively scheduled for the Council meeting on 23 September 1998. The Chairman advised members that the deadline for giving notice of questions was midnight on 14 September 1998.
(b) Bill - First and Second Readings
Securities (Insider Dealing) (Amendment) Bill 1988
21 The Chairman said that the Bill would be introduced into the Council on 23 September 1998 and considered by the House Committee on 25 September 1998.
(c) Government motions
22 No notice had been received.
(d) Members' motions
- Motion on "Relationship between the executive authorities and the legislature"
23 Members noted the draft wording of the motion, to be moved by Mr Ambrose CHEUNG, tabled at the meeting.
- Motion on "Restoring confidence in Hong Kong's air cargo service"
24 Members noted the wording of the motion, to be moved by Mrs Miriam LAU, tabled at the meeting.
[Post-meeting note: The wording of the motions was issued to Members vide LC Paper Nos. CB(3) 252 & 248/98-99 on 11 and 10 September 1998 respectively.]
25 The Chairman advised members that the deadline for giving notice of amendments, if any, to the above motions was 16 September 1998. The speaking time limits stipulated in rule 17(c) of the House Rules would apply.
VI. Advance information on business for the Council meeting on
30 September 1998
(a) Bill - First and Second Readings
(b) Government motions
- Bankruptcy (Amendment) Bill 1998
- Lifts and Escalators (Safety) (Amendment) Bill 1998
26 The Chairman said that the two Bills would be introduced into the Council on 30 September 1998 and considered by the House Committee on 23 October 1998.
27 No notice had been received.
(c) Members' motions
VII. Any other business
- Motion to be moved by Hon Albert HO Chun-yan
28 Members noted that Mr Albert HO had been allocated a debate slot.
- Motion to be moved by Hon Fred LI Wah-ming
29 Members noted the draft wording of the motion (in Chinese only), to be moved by Mr Fred LI, tabled at the meeting.
30 The Chairman said that the deadlines for giving notice of, and amendments (if any) to, the above motions were 15 September 1998 and 23 September 1998 respectively. The speaking time limits stipulated in rule 17(c) of the House Rules would apply.
31 Members did not raise any item for discussion.
32 The meeting ended at 2:50 pm.
Legislative Council Secretariat
16 September 1998