Author:Ethier, Celine
Position::Legislative Reports - Updates on legislative bills, activities of the Senate committees, senators who take leave


Since our last report, many bills have received second reading and been referred to committee. Bill C-2, An Act to amend the Income Tax Act, was read a second time and referred to the Standing Senate Committee on National Finance. Bills S-202, An Act to amend the Divorce Act (shared parenting plans), and S-215, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (sentencing for violent offences against Aboriginal women), were both sent to the Standing Senate Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee for study. Bill S-213, An Act to amend the Constitution Act, 1867 and the Parliament of Canada Act (Speakership of the Senate), was sent to the Special Senate Committee on Senate Modernization, while S-219, An Act to deter Iran-sponsored terrorism, incitement to hatred, and human rights violations, went to the Standing Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs and International Trade.

The Senate also passed three Senate Public Bills during this period. Bills S-217, An Act to amend the Criminal Code (detention in custody), S-211, An Act respecting National Sickle Cell Awareness Day, and S-205, An Act to amend the Canada Border Services Agency Act (Inspector General of the Canada Border Services Agency) and to make consequential amendments to other Acts, were read a third time and are awaiting consideration in the House of Commons. Both Bills S-217 and S-205 were amended in committee.


Senate committees were very active during this quarter.

The Special Senate Committee on Senate Modernization presented a series of 10 reports covering a wide range of specific subjects: committees, the representation of regional interest, the broadcasting of Senate proceedings, the speakership of the Senate, the treatment of omnibus bills, the Order Paper, Question Period, caucuses, and the mandate of the institution. The reports contain numerous recommendations regarding how the Senate could move forward and modernize its practices to accommodate a less partisan approach to doing business in the Senate. The reports, if adopted, would result in the Rules Committee and the Internal Economy Committee being charged to develop the specific changes to the Rules of the Senate and the Senate Administrative Rules necessary to implement the special committee's proposals. The reports are under consideration in the Senate Chamber.

Several committees took advantage of the summer adjournment period to conduct fact-finding missions or hold public hearings in locations across the...

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