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Harper Government to Ask House of Commons to Work Extra Hours

A "Productive, Hard-Working and Orderly House of Commons" is Government's Aim

OTTAWA, ONTARIO -- (Marketwired) -- 05/22/14 -- Today, the Honourable Peter Van Loan, the Leader of the Government in the House of Commons, issued the following statement:

"Our Conservative government continues to focus on Canadians' top priority: jobs, growth and long-term prosperity.

"To ensure that we deliver on this priority, we have worked to make the House of Commons a productive, hard-working, and orderly institution which delivers results for Canadians-but we still have a lot of important work to do over the next year.

"When the House of Commons sits on Monday, I will be proposing that the House have evening sittings for the remainder of the spring. My motion will allow for more than 20 additional hours each week to debate and pass legislation benefitting Canadians.

"Before the House rises for the summer, the Government will be working to achieve progress on real accomplishments for Canadians, including:

--  returning to balanced budgets next year by implementing this year's
    budget, a low-tax plan for jobs and growth;
--  cracking down on cyber bullies and online threats by providing the tools
    necessary to investigate and tackle these crimes;
--  deepening Canada's ambitious trade agenda by opening new markets for
    Canadian exporters through free trade;
--  supporting veterans and their families by helping veterans find
    meaningful employment in the federal public service after their time in
    uniform is complete;
--  protecting victims of crime and giving them a stronger voice in our
    justice system;
--  getting grain to market quickly and more efficiently, following a record
    crop year for Canadian farmers;
--  delivering world-class safety standards with polluter-pays legislation
    covering the offshore and nuclear energy sectors;
--  strengthening the value of Canadian citizenship by updating the
    Citizenship Act for the first time in more than 35 years;
--  securing the funds required to ensure government services continue to be
    supported and delivered for Canadians; and
--  honouring our Government's word by implementing First Nations agreements
    respecting the Qalipu Mi'kmaq First Nation and the Tla'amin Nation.

"And that just covers some of our ambitious priorities. I look forward to the support of the opposition parties for this reasonable plan to work a little bit of overtime so that we can deliver results for our constituents."

This is the second year in a row that the Government has moved to have the House of Commons put in extra hours of work for its last month sitting before summer.

Backgrounder: Government Motion to Work Extra Hours

That, notwithstanding any Standing Order or usual practice of the House, commencing upon the adoption of this Order and concluding on Friday, June 20, 2014,

(a) on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, the ordinary hour of daily adjournment shall be 12 midnight, except that it shall be 10 p.m. on a day when a debate, pursuant to Standing Order 52 or 53.1, is to take place;

(b) subject to paragraph (d), when a recorded division is demanded in respect of a debatable motion, including any division arising as a consequence of the application of Standing Order 61(2), but not including any division in relation to the Business of Supply or arising as a consequence of an order made pursuant to Standing Order 57,

i.  before 2 p.m. on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, it shall
    stand deferred until the conclusion of oral questions at that day's
    sitting, or

ii. after 2 p.m. on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday, or at any time
    on a Friday, it shall stand deferred until the conclusion of oral
    questions at the next sitting day that is not a Friday;

(c) the time provided for Government Orders shall not be extended pursuant to Standing Order 45(7.1);

(d) when a recorded division, which would have ordinarily been deemed deferred to immediately before the time provided for Private Members' Business on a Wednesday governed by this Order, is demanded, the said division is deemed to have been deferred until the conclusion of oral questions on the same Wednesday;

(e) any recorded division which, at the time of the adoption of this Order, stands deferred to immediately before the time provided for Private Members' Business on the Wednesday immediately following the adoption of this Order shall be deemed to stand deferred to the conclusion of oral questions on the same Wednesday;

(f) a recorded division demanded in respect of a motion to concur in a government bill at the report stage pursuant to Standing Order 76.1(9), where the bill has neither been amended nor debated at the report stage, shall be deferred in the manner prescribed by paragraph (b);

(g) for greater certainty, this Order shall not limit the application of Standing Order 45(7);

(h) no dilatory motion may be proposed, except by a Minister of the Crown, after 6:30 p.m.; and

(i) when debate on a motion for the concurrence in a report from a standing, standing joint or special committee is adjourned or interrupted, the debate shall again be considered on a day designated by the government, after consultation with the House Leaders of the other parties, but in any case not later than the twentieth sitting day after the interruption.

Contacts:
Daniel Chomski
Press Secretary
Office of the Government House Leader
(613) 947-7619

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