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Thursday, 17 March 1904

Mr SPEAKER - It will not be competent for the honorable member to move the amendment that he has indicated. Standing order 215 provides that -

A member shall be appointed by the House, each session, to be the Chairman of Committees, who shall hold office till his successor is appointed, ana who shall take the chair of all committees of the whole.

Any motion that would alter the terms of the standing order could not be accepted by the House.

Mr Watson - Another Chairman will have to be elected next session.

Mr SPEAKER - Standing order 215 provides that the Chairman's appointment shall be " till his successor is appointed " - and under that provision a successor might be appointed at any moment. The honorable member's proposed amendment would, however, enable a Chairman to be elected for the whole session, and would practically remove from the House the power to make any change. It would be contrary to the standing order to accept the amendment.

Mr Fisher - On a point of order, Mr. Speaker, I desire to point out that all that I desire is that the Chairman shall hold office during the current session or until his successor is appointed.

Mr SPEAKER - That is precisely what the standing order provides.

Original question resolved in the affirmative.

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