Legislative Council House Committee
LegCo Paper No. CB(2) 458/96-97
Ref : CB2/H/5

House Committee

Minutes of 7th meeting
held on Friday, 15 November 1996 at 3:00 p.m.
in the Legislative Council Chamber

Members present :

    Dr Hon LEONG Che-hung, OBE, JP (Chairman)
    Hon Martin LEE, QC, JP
    Hon SZETO Wah
    Hon Albert CHAN Wai-yip
    Hon CHEUNG Man-kwong
    Hon Michael HO Mun-ka
    Dr Hon HUANG Chen-ya, MBE
    Hon LEE Wing-tat

    Hon James TO Kun-sun
    Dr Hon YEUNG Sum
    Hon Zachary WONG Wai-yin
    Dr Hon Anthony CHEUNG Bing-leung
    Hon Albert HO Chun-yan
    Dr Hon LAW Cheung-kwok
    Hon LAW Chi-kwong
    Hon LEUNG Yiu-chung
    Hon Bruce LIU Sing-lee
    Hon SIN Chung-kai
    Hon TSANG Kin-shing
    Dr Hon John TSE Wing-ling
    Hon Mrs Elizabeth WONG, CBE, ISO, JP

Members absent :

    Hon Ronald ARCULLI, OBE, JP (Deputy Chairman)
    Hon Allen LEE, CBE, JP
    Hon Mrs Selina CHOW, OBE, JP
    Dr Hon David K P LI, OBE, LLD (Cantab), JP
    Hon NGAI Shiu-kit, OBE, JP
    Hon LAU Wong-fat, OBE, JP
    Hon Edward S T HO, OBE, JP
    Hon Mrs Miriam LAU Kin-yee, OBE, JP
    Hon CHIM Pui-chung
    Hon Frederick FUNG Kin-kee
    Hon Emily LAU Wai-hing
    Hon Eric LI Ka-cheung, OBE, JP
    Hon Fred LI Wah-ming
    Hon Henry TANG Ying-yen, JP
    Dr Hon Samuel WONG Ping-wai, MBE, FEng, JP
    Dr Hon Philip WONG Yu-hong
    Hon Howard YOUNG, JP
    Hon Christine LOH Kung-wai
    Hon James TIEN Pei-chun, OBE, JP
    Hon LEE Cheuk-yan
    Hon CHAN Kam-lam
    Hon CHAN Wing-chan
    Hon CHAN Yuen-han
    Hon Andrew CHENG Kar-foo
    Hon Paul CHENG Ming-fun
    Hon CHENG Yiu-tong
    Hon CHEUNG Hon-chung
    Hon CHOY Kan-pui, JP
    Hon David CHU Yu-lin
    Hon IP Kwok-him
    Hon LAU Chin-shek
    Hon Ambrose LAU Hon-chuen, JP
    Hon LEE Kai-ming
    Hon LO Suk-ching
    Hon MOK Ying-fan
    Hon Margaret NG
    Hon NGAN Kam-chuen
    Hon Lawrence YUM Sin-ling

Clerk in attendance :

Mrs Justina LAM
Assistant Secretary General 2

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
Miss Pauline NG
Assistant Secretary General 1
Assistant Secretary General 3
Ms Bernice WONG
Assistant Legal Adviser 1
Ms Kitty CHENG
Assistant Legal Adviser 2
Miss Connie FUNG
Assistant Legal Adviser 3
Ms LEUNG Siu-kam
Chief Assistant Secretary (Complaints)
Ms Kathleen LAU
Chief Public Information Officer
Mrs Percy MA
Chief Assistant Secretary (House Committee)
Mrs Eleanor CHOW
Senior Assistant Secretary (House Committee)

Mr TSANG Kin-shing asked to put on record his remark that Members of the Liberal Party, Democratic Alliance for the Betterment of Hong Kong, Federation of Trade Unions and some other Members were absent from the meeting in order to participate in the nomination of Chief Executive candidates.

I Confirmation of minutes of meeting held on 8 November 1996

(LegCo Paper No. CB(2) 401/96-97)

2. The minutes were confirmed.

II Matters arising

a) Report on Chairman’s meeting with the Chief Secretary

3. The Chairman said that he had advised the Chief Secretary that the House Committee had endorsed the Administration’s revised priority list on Government bills, subject to the order of the Bills Committee on the Social Workers Registration Bill and the three Bills Committees on Member’s bills on the waiting list not being affected.

4. Dr John TSE suggested that the Waste Disposal (Amendment) Bill 1996, at tenth place on the existing waiting list, be accorded priority. As the Bill mainly dealt with recovery of charges for waste disposal, the scrutiny work should be quite straightforward. The Chairman said that since it was a Government bill, he would consult the Chief Secretary first. He suggested and members agreed that Dr TSE’s suggestion would be considered at the next meeting.


5. The Chairman said that Mrs Miriam LAU had also requested him to remind members who had given indication of their attendance at meetings of Bills Committees to make an effort to actually do so. On 12 November 1996, the meeting of the Bills Committee on Companies (Amendment) Bill 1996 scheduled at 8.30 am was cancelled owing to the lack of a quorum.

b) Housing (Amendment) (No. 3) Bill 1996

6. Mr LEUNG Yiu-chung said that subsequent to the interim reply from the Administration to the President, he had written to the President on the Administration’s reply. There had not been any progress so far. The Chairman agreed to raise the matter with the Chief Secretary.


III Legal Adviser’s report on the subsidiary legislation tabled in the Legislative Council on 13 November 1996 (gazetted on 8 November 1996)

(LegCo Paper No. LS 35/96-97)

7. The Legal Adviser drew members’ attention to the report, in particular the following two items of subsidiary legislation which involved fee increases:

  1. Merchant Shipping (Prevention and Control of Pollution) (Charges for Discharge of Polluting Waste) (Amendment) Regulation 1996; and
  2. Builders’ Lifts and Tower Working Platforms (Safety) (Fees) (Amendment) Regulation 1996.

8. Members noted that a LegCo subcommittee formed in 1995 to study the Merchant Shipping (Prevention and Control of Pollution) (Charges for Discharge of Polluting Waste) Regulation had recommended that a review of the effects of the charging scheme and the appropriate level of charges be conducted in a year’s time. While members raised no queries on item (a) above, they agreed that the Panel on Economic Services and the Panel on Environmental Affairs should follow up on the review. Dr Law Cheung-kwok, deputy chairman of the Panel on Economic Services, agreed that the Panel should take up the matter and invite members of the Panel on Environmental Affairs to join the discussion.


9. Members raised no other queries on the subsidiary legislation.

10. Referring to the Post-Release Supervision of Prisoners Regulation which was considered by the House Committee on 1 November 1996, Mr James TO advised members that the Administration had agreed to consider the comments he made on the Regulation. He would move a motion to extend the scrutiny period of the subsidiary legislation to 4 December 1996. The Chairman advised that the deadline for giving notice for moving amendments to the subsidiary legislation was 20 November 1996.

IV Position report on Bills Committees and Subcommittees

(LegCo Paper No. CB(2) 406/96-97)

11. The Chairman said that as the Bills Committee on the New Territories Land Exchange Entitlements (Redemption) Bill had concluded its work, one Bills Committee slot would become available. In accordance with the revised priority list endorsed by the House Committee at the last meeting, the vacant slot should be allocated to the Bills Committee on the Tsing Ma Control Area Bill.

V Further report by the Legal Adviser on outstanding bill

Occupational Deafness (Compensation) (Amendment) Bill 1996

(LegCo Paper No. LS 32/96-97)

12. The Legal Adviser said that pursuant to the decision of the House Committee on 25 October 1996, the Administration had been requested to consider a member’s suggestion to extend the time limit for submitting applications for compensation under the Ordinance for one year from the commencement date of the Bill. However, the Administration did not consider it necessary to extend the deadline as suggested.

13. In response to Mr LEUNG Yiu-chung, the Chairman drew his attention to paragraph 1 (d) of the Secretary for Education and Manpower’s letter which stated that the Administration would publicise widely the new application deadline once the Bill was passed. The Chairman suggested that Mr LEUNG consider moving Committee Stage amendments to the Bill if he was still not satisfied with the reply. Mr LEUNG agreed.

14. Members agreed that the Second Reading debate on the Bill be resumed.

VI Legal Adviser’s report on bills referred to the House Committee under Standing Order 42(3A)

(a) Architects, Engineers, Surveyors and Planners Registration (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 1996

(LegCo Paper No. LS 31/96-97)

15. The Legal Adviser said that the three Registration Boards had supported the Bill when they were consulted. The Legal Service Division was still waiting for the Administration’s reply on some drafting points and would give a further report to members.


(b) Motor Vehicles (First Registration Tax) (Amendment) (No 2) Bill 1996

(LegCo Paper No. LS 34/96-97)

(c) Wild Animals Protection (Amendment) Bill 1996

(LegCo Paper No. LS 33/96-97)

16. Owing to the lack of a quorum, the Chairman said that the discussion of items (b) and (c) above would be deferred to the next meeting.

VII Further business for the LegCo sitting on 20 November 1996

(a) Motion

Resolution under the Legislative Council (Powers and Privileges) Ordinance (Cap 382) - to be moved by Mr IP kwok-him

17. The Chairman said that Mr IP Kwok-him, chairman of the Select Committee to inquire into the circumstances and related issues surrounding the departure of Mr LEUNG Ming-yin, former Director of Immigration, had made a verbal report to the House Committee at the last meeting concerning the above motion. The House Committee had agreed to support the Select Committee’s request that the President be requested to waive the required notice for moving the resolution at the sitting on 13 November 1996. However, the President had subsequently exercised his discretion to waive the required notice of the motion which would be moved at the Council sitting on 20 November 1996.

18. Members noted the wording of the motion.

(b) Bill - 1st and 2nd Readings

Prevention of Corrupt and Illegal Practices at the Election of the First Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region Bill 1996

(Member’s Bill to be introduced by Mr SZETO Wah)

19. Mr SZETO Wah said that he had briefed the Panel on Constitutional Affairs on the Bill on 11 November 1996. He further advised members that in view of the urgency, after he moved the Second Reading of the Bill at the sitting on 20 November 1996, he would move a motion that the Second Reading debate on the Bill be not adjourned. If the second motion was carried, the Second Reading debate would proceed. At the end of the debate, the motion that the Bill be read a Second time would be voted on. If the motion was carried, he would not proceed with the Committee Stage and the Third Reading of the Bill at the same sitting in order to allow time for Members to move Committee Stage amendments to the Bill, if any. Dr YEUNG Sum supplemented that this procedure was adopted so as to enable the enactment of the Bill before the election of the Chief Executive on 11 December 1996.

VIII Business for the LegCo sitting on 27 November 1996

(a) Questions

(LegCo Paper No. CB(3) 193/96-97)

20. The Chairman said that 20 questions (six oral and 14 written) had been tentatively scheduled.

21. Mrs Elizabeth WONG said that she had been advised by the Secretariat that as Mr CHENG Yiu-tong had withdrawn his question, it was her turn to ask an oral question. However, as she would be joining a delegation to Geneva, she would not be able to attend the sitting. Assistant Secretary General 3 advised that the slot vacated by Mr CHENG would be re-allocated to another member.

(b) Statement

22. No statement had been notified.

(c) Government Motion

23. No motion had been notified.

(d) Bills - 1st and 2nd Readings

(i) Television (Amendment) Bill 1996

(ii) Post-Release Supervision of Prisoners (Amendment) Bill 1996

(iii) Travel Agents (Travel Industry Compensation Fund (Amount of Ex-gratia Payments and Financial Penalty) Rules) (Amendment) Bill 1996

(Member’s Bill to be introduced by Mr Fred LI Wah-ming)

24. The Chairman said that the above Bills would be introduced into LegCo on 27 November 1996 and considered by the House Committee on 29 November 1996.

(e) Bills - resumption of debate on 2nd Reading, Committee Stage and 3rd Reading

(i) Securities and Futures Commission (Amendment) (No 2) Bill 1996

(ii) Protection of Wages on Insolvency (Amendment) Bill 1996

(iii) Employees’ Compensation (Amendment) (No 2) Bill 1996

25. The Chairman advised that members had agreed at the last meeting that the Second Reading debates on the above Bills be resumed.

26. The Chairman said that the Administration had advised that the Evidence (Amendment) Bill 1996 would not have its Second Reading debate resumed on 27 November 1996, as reported by the Bills Committee to the House Committe at the last meeting.

(f) Motion debate on "Policy on people’s livelihood after the transition"

27. Members noted the wording of Mr Fred LI’s motion.

28. The Chairman advised members that the deadline for giving notice of amendments to the above motion, if any, was 20 November 1996.

29. The Chairman said that Miss CHAN Yuen-han’s request concerning her late application for a debating slot for the sitting on 27 November 1996 could not be dealt with owing to the lack of a quorum at the meeting.

IX Advance information on motion debates for the LegCo sitting on
4 December 1996

(a) Motion debate on "Territorial Development Strategy Review"

30. Members noted the subject of Mr Edward HO’s motion.

(b) Motion debate on "Provisional legislature"

31. Members noted the subject of Mr CHENG Kar-foo’s motion.

32. The Chairman advised members that the deadlines for giving notice of, and amendments to, the above motions were 19 November 1996 and 27 November 1996 respectively.

X Reports of Panels/Bills Committees/Subcommittees

Report of the Bills Committee to study the New Territories Land Exchange Entitlements (Redemption) Bill

(LegCo Paper No. CB(1) 307/96-97)

33. Owing to the lack of a quorum, the Chairman said that the discussion of this item would be deferred to the next meeting.

XI Any Other Business

(a) President’ ruling under Standing Order 34(2)

34. The Chairman said that the above item proposed by Mr LEUNG Yiu-chung would be deferred to the next meeting owing to the lack of a quorum.

(b) Governor’s Question Time on 21 November 1996

35. The Chairman said that the Governor had proposed to answer questions on the following topics:

  1. Governor’s visit to Europe; and
  2. Report to the United Nations on human rights issues.

36. The meeting ended at 3.45 pm.

Legislative Council Secretariat
20 November 1996

Last Updated on 16 August 1999