Parliament Ends Long Urgency Session

by Desk Editor on Saturday, May 18, 2013 — 7:15 PM

A marathon urgency session has ended at 7.14pm on Saturday with the passage into law of a bill hiking petrol taxes.

The session began on Thursday afternoon to progress five bills with three going through all stages.

Labour did not make life easy for the Government and ensured their MPs suffered the maximum amount of misery for using post-Budget urgency to progress non-Budget related bills.

In the final stages Labour was casting just 19 votes as they mocked National MPs who were forced to sit through the day.

The House resumed at 9am on Saturday to debate the last clauses of the Crown Minerals Amendment Act 2013 Amendment Bill in its committee stage.

MPs completed the committee stage clauses by votes of 68 to 48 with National, NZ First, ACT and United Future in favour and it was reported without amendment. This was later amended to 68 to 46 with the two Maori Party proxy votes removed.

The Crown Mineral Amendment Bill makes changes to a bill passed a few weeks ago and which is yet come into law.

The bill passed its third reading and MPs began the first reading debate on the Customs and Excise (Budget Measures—Motor Spirits) Amendment Bill.

The bill seeks to raise fuel tax by 3 cents a litre each July for the next three years.

The policy decision behind the bill was announced last December.

The bill completed its first reading by 73 to 41 with National, Greens, Mana, ACT and United Future in favour.

The second reading and committee stage were completed with the third reading vote 67 to 26 with National, Greens, Mana, ACT and United Future in favour.

For earlier coverage of the bills and the current Urgency session see To The Midnight Hour.

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