(1) The Speaker maintains order and decorum in the House.
(2) Whenever the Speaker rises during a sitting, members must sit down and be silent so that the Speaker can be heard without interruption.
Except when voting, members must make an acknowledgement to the Chair on entering and leaving the Chamber.
(1) Members must be seated when they are in the Chamber except when speaking in debate or voting.
(2) As far as practicable, each party occupies a block of seats in the Chamber.
(3) The Speaker decides any dispute as to the seats to be occupied.
When the Speaker is about to leave the Chamber at the conclusion of a sitting, members rise in their places and remain standing until the Speaker has left the Chamber.
(1) Any member may raise a point of order. A point of order takes precedence of other business until ruled on by the Speaker.
(2) The Speaker may rule on a point of order when it is raised without allowing any discussion apart from that of the member raising the point.
(3) A member raising a point of order and any member permitted by the Speaker to speak to a point of order must put the point succinctly and speak only to the point of order raised. A point of order is heard in silence by the House.
(1) The Speaker may order any member whose conduct is highly disorderly to withdraw immediately from the House during the period (up to the remainder of that day’s sitting) that the Speaker decides, except that a member ordered to withdraw before or during oral questions may not return to the Chamber to ask or answer a question and no other member may ask a question on that member’s behalf.
(2) Any member ordered to withdraw from the House may not enter the Chamber but may vote.
The Speaker may name any member whose conduct is grossly disorderly and call on the House to judge the conduct of the member.
Whenever a member has been named, the Speaker forthwith puts a question, “That [such member] be suspended from the service of the House”. There is no amendment or debate on this question.
If a member is named in a committee of the whole House, the committee is suspended and the chairperson reports the matter to the House. The Speaker then puts the question for the member’s suspension as provided in Standing Order 91.
If any member is suspended under Standing Order 91, the suspension—
(a) on the first occasion is for 24 hours:
(b) on the second occasion during the same Parliament is for seven days, excluding the day of suspension:
(c) on the third or any subsequent occasion during the same Parliament is for 28 days, excluding the day of suspension.
If any member who is suspended under Standing Order 91 refuses to obey a direction of the Speaker to leave the Chamber, that member is, without any further question being put, suspended from the service of the House for the remainder of the calendar year.
(1) A member who is suspended from the service of the House may not enter the Chamber, vote, serve on a committee, or lodge questions or notices of motion.
(2) The Journals record the suspension of a member from the service of the House, and state the day or days on which the member is suspended from the service of the House.
The fact that a member has been suspended under Standing Order 91 or 94 does not prevent the House from also holding the member’s conduct to be a contempt.
A motion may be moved only after notice of it is given and the notice appears on the Order Paper, unless a Standing Order or the practice of the House provides to the contrary.
(1) Subject to paragraph (2), notice of a motion a member intends to move may be given by any member by delivering a signed copy to the Clerk between 9 am and 10 am on any sitting day.
(2) Notice of a motion relating to a particular Supplementary Order Paper cannot be given unless that Supplementary Order Paper has been circulated to members.
The Speaker examines all notices of motion that have been given, and those that are accepted as being in order are made available at the Table when the House meets and are set down as Government or Members’ orders of the day according to whether they are Government notices of motion or Members’ notices of motion.
Subject to Standing Orders 321, 323, and 324, all Members’ notices of motion that have not been dealt with within one week of their first appearance on the Order Paper lapse and are struck off the Order Paper.
(1) A notice of motion must be expressed in a form and with content appropriate for a resolution of the House. It must clearly indicate the issue to be raised for debate and include only such material as may be necessary to identify the facts or matter to which the motion relates.
(2) Notices of motion must not contain—
(a) unbecoming or offensive expressions, or expressions or words that would not be permitted in debate:
(b) statements of fact or the names of persons unless they are strictly necessary to render the notice intelligible and can be authenticated.
A seconder is not required for a motion.
(1) When a motion has been moved, the Speaker proposes the question, “That the motion be agreed to”.
(2) After the Speaker has proposed the question on the motion, the motion cannot be withdrawn without leave.
A resolution of the House may be rescinded on motion with notice.
When two or more members rise together, the member called upon by the Speaker is entitled to speak.
In deciding whom to call, the Speaker takes account of the following factors:
(a) if possible, a member of each party should be able to speak in each debate:
(b) overall participation in a debate should be approximately proportional to party membership in the House:
(c) priority should be given to party spokespersons in order of size of party membership in the House:
(d) the seniority of members and the interests and expertise of individual members who wish to speak.
A member on being called to speak addresses the Speaker and, through the Speaker, the House.
A member may address the Speaker in English, Māori or New Zealand Sign Language.
Except as otherwise provided, a member may speak only once to a question before the House.
(1) A member who has spoken to a question may speak again to explain some material part of the member’s speech which has been misquoted, misunderstood, or misrepresented in the same debate.
(2) A member may not introduce any new matter or interrupt any member to explain a misquotation, misunderstanding, or misrepresentation.
(1) All debate must be relevant to the question before the House.
(2) After having called the attention of the House to the conduct of a member who persists in irrelevance or tedious repetition either of the member’s own arguments or of the arguments used by other members in debate, the Speaker may terminate that member’s speech.
(1) A member may use an appropriate visual aid to illustrate a point being made during the member’s speech, provided that the aid does not inconvenience other members or obstruct the proceedings of the House.
(2) Such an aid may be displayed only when the member is speaking to a question before the House and must be removed from the Chamber at the conclusion of the member’s speech.
(1) A member may not anticipate discussion of any general business or order of the day.
(2) In determining whether a discussion is out of order, the Speaker has regard to the probability of the matter anticipated being brought before the House within a reasonable time.
A member may not refer to confidential proceedings of a select committee until those proceedings are reported to the House.
(1) Matters awaiting or under adjudication in, or suppressed by an order of, any New Zealand court may not be referred to in any motion, debate, or question, including a supplementary question, subject always to the discretion of the Speaker and to the right of the House to legislate on any matter or to consider delegated legislation.
(2) To enable the exercise of the Speaker’s discretion under paragraph (1), a member who intends to refer to such a matter must give written notice to the Speaker of this intention.
(3) In determining whether to exercise discretion under paragraph (1), the Speaker has regard to the written notice given by the member under paragraph (2), and—
(a) balances the privilege of freedom of speech against the public interest in maintaining confidence in the judicial resolution of disputes, and
(b) takes into account the constitutional relationship of mutual respect that exists between the legislative and judicial branches of government, and the risk of prejudicing a matter awaiting or under adjudication in any New Zealand court, including one awaiting sentencing.
(1) Standing Order 115 has effect,—
(a) in relation to a criminal case, from the moment the law is set in motion by a charge being made:
(b) in relation to cases other than criminal, from the time when proceedings have been initiated by the filing of the appropriate document in the registry or office of the court.
(2) Standing Order 115 ceases to have effect in any case when the verdict and sentence have been announced or judgment given.
(3) In any case where notice of appeal is given, Standing Order 115 has effect from the time when the notice is given until the appeal has been decided.
A member may not use offensive words against the House or against any member of the judiciary.
A member may not refer to the Sovereign or the Governor-General disrespectfully in debate or for the purpose of influencing the House in its deliberations.
If any offensive or disorderly words are used, whether by a member who is speaking or by a member who is present, the Speaker intervenes.
A member may not make an imputation of improper motives against a member, an offensive reference to a member’s private affairs, or a personal reflection against a member.
(1) The time limits for speeches and debates are set out in Appendix A.
(2) An individual speaking time may be shared between two members of the same party or between two members of different parties if both parties agree.
The general rules relating to amendments set out in Standing Orders 123 to 130 apply subject to any provision in the Standing Orders to the contrary.
An amendment must be relevant to the question that it proposes to amend.
An amendment must be put into writing, signed by the mover, and delivered to the Clerk at the Table.
(1) When an amendment has been moved, the Speaker proposes the question, “That the amendment be agreed to”.
(2) After the Speaker has proposed the question on an amendment, the amendment cannot be withdrawn without leave.
After the question has been proposed on an amendment, both the main question and the amendment (and any other amendments already moved) are open for debate.
An amendment may be moved to a proposed amendment.
After an amendment has been moved, a member who has spoken prior to the member who moved the amendment—
(a) may speak a further time, but
(b) may not move a further amendment.
(1) At the conclusion of the debate on a motion, the question on any amendment that is in order is put.
(2) Amendments are put in the order in which they were moved.
(3) When amendments are agreed to, the question, as amended, is put.
(4) When amendments are not agreed to, the question is put as originally proposed.
A member speaking may be interrupted—
(a) by a point of order:
(b) by the raising of a matter of privilege relating to the conduct of strangers present:
(c) by the suspension or conclusion of a sitting.
The debate on a question may be interrupted—
(a) by a point of order:
(b) by the raising of a matter of privilege relating to the conduct of strangers present:
(c) by the suspension or conclusion of a sitting:
(d) by a message from the Governor-General:
(e) by a member taking the oath or making the affirmation:
(f) by a motion that strangers be ordered to withdraw:
(g) by the making of a ministerial statement, a personal explanation, a maiden statement, or a valedictory statement:
(h) in accordance with a decision of the House or a determination of the Business Committee.
(1) After a question has been proposed, any member, on being called to speak to that question, may move “That this debate be now adjourned” either to a later hour on the same day or to any other day. There is no amendment or debate on this question.
(2) On the adjournment of the House, any debate in progress is adjourned and set down for resumption on the next sitting day.
The member upon whose motion a debate is adjourned or who was speaking when the House adjourned may speak first on the resumption of the debate if the member claims that right.
If a motion for the adjournment of the debate is negatived, the member moving the motion for the adjournment may speak, otherwise the member’s speech lapses.
(1) After a question has been proposed, any member, on being called to speak to that question, may move “That the question be now put”. In all cases the speech of the member lapses on the moving of the closure motion.
(2) The Speaker may not accept a closure motion if the time for the debate is prescribed by the Standing Orders or by a determination of the Business Committee.
(3) The Speaker may accept a closure motion if, in the Speaker’s opinion, it is reasonable to do so.
(4) A temporary Speaker or, in committee, a temporary chairperson may not accept a closure motion.
If the Speaker accepts a closure motion, a question is put on the closure and decided without amendment or debate.
(1) When the question for the closure is agreed to, the question under debate is put without further amendment or debate.
(2) Any other question (including any proposed amendment that has been properly notified on a Supplementary Order Paper or handed in to the Table before the closure motion was accepted and that relates to the matter under consideration) is then put to allow the main question itself to be decided without further amendment
(1) Except where otherwise provided, as soon as the debate upon a question is concluded the Speaker puts the question to the House.
(2) Questions are determined by a majority of votes Aye or No. Every member is entitled to one vote or to abstain.
The Speaker asks members to answer “Aye” or “No” to the question and states the result of the voice vote. Any member present may then call for a further vote to be held.
Where a further vote is called for, a party vote is held unless the subject of the vote is to be treated as a conscience issue.
Where the Speaker considers that the subject of a vote is to be treated as a conscience issue, the Speaker will permit a personal vote to be held instead of a party vote.
(1) In a party vote,—
(a) the Clerk asks the leader of each party or a member authorised by the leader to cast the party’s votes; parties are asked to vote in the order of the size of their parliamentary membership:
(b) a party’s votes may be cast for the Ayes or for the Noes or recorded as an abstention, and a party may cast some of its votes in one of these categories and some in another or others (a split-party vote):
(c) the total number of votes cast for each party may include only those members present within the parliamentary precincts together with any properly authorised proxy votes:
(d) after votes have been cast by parties, any Independent member and any member who is voting contrary to his or her party’s vote may cast a vote; finally, any proxy vote for a member who is voting contrary to his or her party may be cast:
(e) the Speaker declares the result to the House.
(2) If a party casts a split-party vote, the member casting the vote must deliver to the Clerk at the Table, immediately after the vote, a list showing the names of the members of that party voting in the various categories.
(3) Subject to Standing Order 155, any party consisting of five or fewer members, and any Independent member, may cast their votes by proxy, otherwise a party may have votes cast on its behalf only if it has a member in the House at the time of the vote.
(4) The number of votes cast for each party and the names of the members of a party voting in each category on a split-party vote are recorded in the Journals of the House and in Hansard.
A personal vote may be held following a party vote if a member requests one and the Speaker considers that the decision on the party vote is so close that a personal vote may make a material difference to the result.
(1) In a personal vote,—
(a) the bells are rung for seven minutes:
(b) the Speaker directs the Ayes to pass to the right, the Noes to the left, and abstentions to the centre, and appoints a teller for the Ayes and one for the Noes:
(c) the doors are closed and locked as soon after the bells have stopped as the Speaker directs, and the Speaker then restates the question:
(d) all members present within the Chamber or the lobbies when the doors are locked must vote or record their abstentions:
(e) members’ votes are counted by the tellers and their names recorded; members abstaining have their abstentions recorded by the Clerk at the Table:
(f) the personal vote lists are signed by the tellers and returned to the Speaker, and the Speaker declares the result to the House.
(2) Members may observe the voting in any part of the Chamber and in the lobbies.
Members voting or abstaining on a personal vote must remain in the Chamber or in the lobbies until the declaration of the result by the Speaker; the vote or abstention of any member who does not remain in the Chamber or in the lobbies until the declaration of the result is disallowed.
In respect of any personal vote that is held without any debate or other proceeding occurring since the immediately preceding personal vote, the bells may be rung for one minute only.
A member who has begun to act as a teller must continue to act in that capacity unless excused by the Speaker.
If there is no teller for the Ayes or for the Noes, the Speaker immediately declares the result for the other side.
(1) The names of members who have voted or abstained on a personal vote are recorded in the Journals.
(2) The personal vote lists show where an individual’s vote or abstention is by proxy.
Where fewer than 20 members vote or abstain on a personal vote, that vote is of no effect.
(1) In the case of confusion or error concerning the result of a vote, the House, unless any error can be otherwise corrected, proceeds to a second vote.
(2) If the result of a vote has been inaccurately reported, the Speaker may correct it.
In the case of a tie on a vote, the question is lost.
(1) A member may give authority for a proxy vote to be cast in the member’s name or for an abstention to be recorded.
(2) A proxy must state the name of the member who is giving the authority, the date it is given, and the period or business for which the authority is valid. It must be signed by the member giving it and indicate the member who is given authority to exercise it.
(3) A member who has given a proxy may revoke or amend that proxy at any time before its exercise.
(4) The leader or senior whip of each party, or a member acting as the leader or senior whip of the party in the House for the time being, may exercise a proxy vote for any member of the party, subject to any express direction from a member to the contrary.
(1) A proxy vote may be cast or an abstention recorded on a party or personal vote only by the person who has authority to exercise it. In the case of any dispute, the member exercising a proxy must produce the authority to the Speaker.
(2) In the case of a party vote, proxies may be exercised for a number equal to no more than 25 percent of a party’s membership in the House, rounded upwards where applicable.
(3) A proxy may be exercised for a member, in addition to the number of proxies that may be exercised under paragraph (2), while that member is absent from the House with the permission of the Speaker granted under Standing Order 38(1).
(4) In the case of a party vote, proxy votes may be exercised for a party consisting of up to five members, or an Independent member, only if at least one of the members of that party or that Independent member is—
(a) present within the parliamentary precincts at the time, or
(b) absent from the House with the permission of the Speaker granted under Standing Order 38(1).
(5) Despite paragraph (2), there is no limit on the number of proxy votes that may be exercised in the period from the declaration of a state of national emergency until that state of national emergency is terminated or expires.
(1) The House may order that a summons be issued to any person—
(a) to attend at the bar of the House or before any committee of the House to be examined and give evidence:
(b) to produce papers and records in that person’s possession, custody, or control to the House or a committee.
(2) Every summons issued at the direction of the House or a committee—
(a) must state the time and place at which it is to be complied with by the person to whom it is addressed, and
(b) is signed by the Speaker and served upon the person concerned under the Speaker’s direction.
(1) The House may, on motion without notice, order that any person giving evidence before it be examined after taking an oath or making an affirmation.
(2) When a person is examined on oath or affirmation, the oath or affirmation is administered by the Clerk.
(1) The examination of witnesses before the House is conducted as the Speaker, with the approval of the House, directs.
(2) The Speaker, and every member through the Speaker, may put questions to a witness.
(1) A person (not a member) who has been referred to in the House by name, or in such a way as to be readily identifiable, may apply to the Speaker in writing—
(a) claiming to have been adversely affected by the reference or to have suffered damage to that person’s reputation as a result of the reference, and
(b) submitting a response to the reference, and
(c) requesting that the response be incorporated in the parliamentary record.
(2) An application must be made within three months of the reference having been made.
(3) Any response must be succinct and strictly relevant to the reference that was made. It must not contain anything offensive in character.
(1) The Speaker considers whether in all the circumstances of the case the response should be incorporated in the parliamentary record.
(2) In that consideration, the Speaker—
(a) may confer with the person who made the application and with the member who referred to that person in the House, and
(b) takes account of the extent to which the reference is capable of adversely affecting, or damaging the reputation of, the person making the application.
(3) The Speaker is not to consider or judge the truth of the reference made in the House or of the response to it.
If the Speaker decides that the response should not be incorporated in the parliamentary record, the Speaker must inform the person concerned that no further action will be taken.
(1) A response that the Speaker determines should be incorporated in the parliamentary record is presented to the House and is published under the authority of the House.
(2) The Speaker may decide that a response should be incorporated in the parliamentary record after the person has amended it in a manner approved by the Speaker.
(1) Members must make returns of pecuniary and other specified interests in accordance with the provisions of Part 1 of Appendix B.
(2) Returns of members’ pecuniary and other specified interests are to be maintained in a register in accordance with the provisions of Part 2 of Appendix B.
(1) A financial interest is a direct financial benefit that might accrue to a member personally, or to any trust, company, or other business entity in which the member holds an appreciable interest, as a result of the outcome of the House’s consideration of a particular item of business.
(2) A financial interest—
(a) includes a financial interest held by a member’s spouse or partner or by any child of the member who is wholly or mainly dependent on the member for support, but
(b) does not include any interest held by a member or any other person as one of a class of persons who belong to a profession, vocation, or other calling, or who hold public offices or an interest held in common with the public.
(1) A member must, before participating in the consideration of any item of business, declare any financial interest that the member has in that business.
(2) Nothing in this Standing Order requires a member to declare an interest that is contained in the Register of Pecuniary and Other Specified Interests of Members of Parliament.
If any dispute arises as to whether a member has a financial interest, the matter is referred to the Speaker, whose decision is final.
(1) The Speaker announces to the House a message from the Governor-General.
(2) The announcement of a message may interrupt a debate but may not interrupt a member who is speaking.
(3) When the Speaker announces the receipt of a message from the Governor-General, members rise in their places in acknowledgement.
(1) The Speaker prepares any address agreed to by the House.
(2) An address must contain any words ordered by the House to be part of the address. Otherwise an Address in Reply must not be controversial.
(3) The Speaker reads any proposed address to the House and puts the question for its adoption forthwith. There is no amendment or debate on the question.
(1) The Speaker presents or transmits to the Governor-General all addresses adopted by the House.
(2) An address is presented or transmitted in such manner as the Governor-General approves.
(3) The Speaker reports to the House the Governor-General’s answer to an address.
(4) An address to the Sovereign may be presented or transmitted to the Governor-General for transmission to the Sovereign.
On the order of the day being called for going into committee for any purpose, the Speaker declares the House in committee and leaves the Chair without putting any question.
When the Speaker has left the Chair, the Mace is placed under the Table.
(1) The Deputy Speaker or, in the Deputy Speaker’s absence, an Assistant Speaker acts as chairperson in a committee of the whole House.
(2) If neither the Deputy Speaker nor an Assistant Speaker is present or able to take the Chair, the House may appoint another member to be acting chairperson. A motion for this purpose may be moved without notice, and there is no amendment or debate on the question.
(3) At any time during a sitting of a committee of the whole House, and without any formal communication to the committee, any member may, at the request of the chairperson, take the Chair as temporary chairperson.
Subject to the express provisions of the Standing Orders, the same rules for the conduct of proceedings are followed in a committee of the whole House as apply to the conduct of proceedings in the House itself.
(1) The examination of witnesses is conducted before a committee of the whole House as the chairperson, with the approval of the committee, directs.
(2) The chairperson, and every member through the chairperson, may put questions to a witness.
A committee of the whole House may consider only those matters referred to it by the House.
(1) An instruction may be given to a committee of the whole House extending or restricting its powers in regard to consideration of the bill or other matter referred to it or requiring it to carry out that consideration in a particular manner.
(2) An instruction is moved immediately after the order of the day for consideration in committee has been called.
(3) An instruction relating to a Supplementary Order Paper or amendment may not be moved unless the Supplementary Order Paper has been printed and circulated to members, or the amendment has been delivered to the Clerk at the Table.
(4) An instruction may not be moved that is the same in substance as an instruction that was agreed to or defeated in the same calendar year.
(5) Any debate on the question for an instruction is restricted to the subject-matter of the motion. It may not extend to the principles, objects, or provisions of the bill or other matter to which the motion relates.
(6) There is no amendment or debate on the question for an instruction to a committee requiring it to consider a bill clause by clause.
(7) A committee may, by leave, vary the terms of any instruction that has been given to it.
(1) The chairperson may temporarily suspend the proceedings of the committee—
(a) in the case of any grave disorder arising in committee, or
(b) in accordance with a decision of the House or a determination of the Business Committee, or
(c) in the event of an emergency situation.
(2) Where the proceedings of a committee are temporarily suspended under paragraph (1)(a) or (b), the Speaker automatically resumes the Chair.
(3) Where the proceedings of a committee are temporarily suspended under paragraph (1)(c), the Speaker—
(a) resumes the Chair immediately, or
(b) decides when the sitting should resume, in which case the Speaker resumes the Chair at that time, or
(c) may decide that the sitting is adjourned.
A motion may be moved that the chairperson obtain the Speaker’s ruling on a matter of procedure. There is no amendment or debate on the question.
Whenever the proceedings of a committee are suspended under Standing Order 177 or 178, the Speaker may, after dealing with such matters as are necessary, declare the House in committee again and leave the Chair. In committee, business is resumed at the point of interruption.
A committee of the whole House may not adjourn its own sitting or the consideration of any matter to a future sitting.
(1) A member may move “That the committee report progress”. On the report being agreed to by the House, the bill or other matter is set down for further consideration in committee on the next sitting day.
(2) The member in charge of a bill may move “That the committee report progress and sit again presently”. On the report being agreed to by the House, the bill is set down for further consideration in committee later in the sitting.
(3) There is no amendment or debate on a question to report progress.
(1) When all the matters referred to a committee of the whole House have been considered, the chairperson reports them to the House.
(2) When all such matters have not been considered, the chairperson reports progress, or no progress, as the case may be.
In reporting to the House, the chairperson moves that the report be adopted. There is no amendment or debate on the question.