Minutes - Business Committee

Meeting Venue:

Presiding Officer’s office, 4th floor - Tŷ Hywel

Meeting date: 4 June 2019

Meeting time: 08.30 - 09.36







Committee Members:

Elin Jones AM, Llywydd (Chair)

Rebecca Evans AM

Darren Millar AM

Rhun ap Iorwerth AM

Committee Staff:

Aled Elwyn Jones (Clerk)

Others in attendance

Ann Jones AM, Deputy Presiding Officer

Manon Antoniazzi, Chief Executive & Clerk of the Assembly

Siân Wilkins, Head of Chamber and Committee Service

Siwan Davies, Director of Assembly Business

Gwion Evans, Head of the Llywydd's Private Office

Elin Roberts, Policy Adviser to the Llywydd

Helen Carey, Welsh Government

Bethan Garwood



1       Introductions, apologies and substitutions



2       Minutes of the previous meeting

The minutes for the meeting were agreed by the Committee for publication.



3       Organisation of Business



3.1   This Week's Business



·         There will be no voting time.



·         All voting will take place before the Short Debate.




3.2   Three Week Timetable of Government Business

Business Committee noted the 3 Week Timetable of Government Business.



3.3   Three Week Timetable of Assembly Business

At their meeting of 2 April, Business Managers agreed provisionally to schedule a joint item with the Youth Parliament on 26 June. The Llywydd informed the Committee that the details have not yet been confirmed, so the item is not yet on the Business Statement, but that a paper will be brought to Business Committee next week.


Business Committee determined the organisation of Assembly business and agreed to schedule the following items of business:


Wednesday 19 June 2019 –

·         Debate on the Children, Young People and Education Committee report - Bacc to the Future: The status of the Welsh Baccalaureate qualification (60 mins) postponed until 3 July

·         Debate on Petition P-05-869: Declare a Climate Emergency and fit all policies with zero-carbon targets (60 mins)

·         Time allocated to the Brexit Party (60 mins)


Wednesday 26 June 2019 –


·         Debate on a Member’s Legislative Proposal (30 mins)

·         Debate on the Equality, Local Government and Communities Committee report: Diversity in Local Government (60 mins)

·         Time allocated to Plaid Cymru (60 mins)



4       Assembly Business



4.1   Letter from Dai Lloyd AM

At the request of the Member, Business Managers agreed to schedule a plenary debate for 19 June in relation to the National Health Service (Welsh Language in Primary Care Services) (Miscellaneous Amendments) (Wales) Regulations 2019.




4.2   The effect of recent changes to group membership on committees

Business Managers agreed to reduce the size of the seven eight-Member policy and legislation committees to six Members each. They asked officials to write to the Brexit Party and Independent Members to ask for their preferences for the remaining places on Committees.


Business Managers also agreed the allocation of plenary time to opposition groups should be a 11:10:4 ratio, to maintain an exact reflection of relative group sizes.


Business Managers noted that the Llywydd has agreed to allow the Brexit Group to ask two Leaders’ questions to the First Minister, and to nominate three Ministers to ask two spokespeople questions to.



5       Standing Orders



5.1   Legal advice on the proposal to amend Standing Order 1.3

Business Managers considered the legal advice on the proposal to amend Standing Order 1.3. They asked officials to draft a report setting out why they have decided not to take forward the change at this point, but to review the relevant Standing Orders in time for the sixth Assembly.



6       Business Committee



6.1   Collation of Guidance - Spokespeople Questions

Business Managers considered the current guidance on spokespeople questions and agreed to amend the wording slightly, to allow the questions to deviate from a broad theme in exceptional circumstances. The collated guidance has therefore been agreed in its entirety by Business Managers and will be published shortly.



7       Papers to note - Business Committee



7.1   Letter to the EAAL Committee from the First Minister regarding ministerial slots on Mondays



7.2   Letter to the First Minister from the EAAL Committee regarding ministerial slots on Mondays

Business Managers noted the two letters, and suggested that the Chair of EEAL may wish to raise the issue of Ministers attending Committee slots on a Monday afternoon at the Chair’s Forum.



8       Any Other Business

Business Committee Membership


Although the Brexit Party qualify to be represented on the Business Committee, the motion to elect Caroline Jones as a member was defeated on 22 May. The Llywydd has received a request from the Brexit Party to re-table the motion to elect Caroline Jones. Business Managers agreed to re-table the motion and provisionally scheduled it for tomorrow, but asked officials to check with the Brexit Party whether the timing was appropriate for them.






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