The week ahead in Westminster

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There will be three more days of debate over legislation granting Government the power to trigger Article 50 this week, as MPs debate the extensive list of amendments to the two-clause Bill.

Following last Wednesday's vote on the second reading of the Bill - in which just 114 MPs opposed - it seems highly likely that it will pass through committee stage and final vote without a problem.

Given the sheer number and partisan nature of amendments, it also seems likely that the legislation will leave the Commons unaltered. But it will be interesting to see whether any more Labour MPs will be emboldened by their 47 rebellious colleagues to defy the whip and vote against Article 50.

Tuesday is also expected to see the Government publish its long overdue White Paper on housing, including plans to boost supply of affordable housing and speed up the planning process.

Monday February 6

Business in the Commons kicks off at 2.30pm with questions to the Education Secretary Justine Greening. This is the first time Ms Greening has been at the Despatch Box in her education role since rumours emerged of a possible backbench rebellion over changes to the school funding formula. She is also facing growing calls for sex and relationship education to be made mandatory in all state-funded schools, as demonstrated by Hull MP Diana Johnson's Westminster Hall debate last week.

The main event in the chamber however is the first day of committee stage for the European Union (Notification of Withdrawal) Bill. Following two days of passionate exchanges during last week's second reading, this will see MPs getting down to the nitty-gritty as they debate possible amendments.

Motions up for consideration include calls for close scrutiny of Government progress in negotiations by MPs - including through quarterly reports to Parliament, and debates on membership of the single market - and the need for the Prime Minister to secure the endorsement of the devolved nations for the final deal with the EU.

There is also an amendment calling for the creation of a National Convention made up of representatives from across Government, regions and sectors, to form a list of negotiating priorities that "better reflect the needs of the regions of the UK".

Outside the Commons, the Transport select committee will be grilling the heads of General Motors about the recall of Zafira and Corsa cars following a number of vehicle fires. Meanwhile in Westminster Hall MPs will debating a petition calling for an end to the domestic ivory market in the UK.

Over in the Lords, the former MP for Thirsk and Malton, Baroness McIntosh, will be pressing the Government about the availability of residential care home places, ahead of a debate on the impact of Brexit on the transport sector.

And Labour MP Ed Miliband has an adjournment debate on HS2, which is likely to focus on changes to the route through South Yorkshire and calls for the service to stop at Meadowhall.

Tuesday February 7

MPs gather at 11,30am for questions to the Secretary of State for Health. While headlines about the crisis in the NHS have died down in recent weeks, it is still a subject of significant concern among MPs, alongside the struggling adult health and social care system.

This is followed by a ten-minute rule motion from the Halifax MP Holly Lynch, calling for tougher sentences for people found guilty of assaulting emergency services staff including police officers.

Once again, the main business for the day is the committee stage of the Brexit Bill as the Government looks to push legislation through Parliament in time to meet its March 31st deadline for triggering Article 50.

Meanwhile, outside the main chamber, the International Trade select committee will continue its inquiry into UK trade options beyond 2019, with Dr Peg Murray-Evans of York University among the experts giving evidence.

Over in Westminster Hall MPs will discuss the blight of seagulls in coastal towns and cities - an issue that dominated headlines last summer following a spate of attacks.

And the Labour MP Wayne David will lead the adjournment debate looking at the Government's consultation on penalties for offenders who cause death or serious injury by driving.

Wednesday February 8

The day begins at 11.30am with questions to the Cabinet Office and the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster. Following Friday's debate in the Lords about reform of the second chamber - and the potential for peers to cause havoc with Brexit legislation - it is likely there will be a few questions about Government plans to bring forward changes.

Then comes the weekly installation of PMQs, after which MPs begin the final day of debate on the Bill to trigger Article 50. This will culminate in a final vote in the Commons, before the legislation is sent to the Lords.

As things get tense in the main chamber, the Leeds MP Rachel Reeves will lead a debate over in Westminster Hall looking at fees and charges on unauthorised overdrafts. Meanwhile, the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs select committee will begin its inquiry into the impact of labour shortages on sustainable food production in the UK.

In the Lords, the EU Energy and Environment committee will be taking evidence from Guy Smith, the vice president of the National Farmers Union and Ian Wright, the director general of the Food and Drink Federation, for its inquiry into the likely consequences of Brexit on the agricultural industry.

And for the adjournment debate, Labour MP Jim McMahon will raise the issue of educational attainment in his Oldham constituency.

Thursday February 9

MPs gather at 9.30am for questions to the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport. This could see some MPs asking for further details of the Government's efforts to crack down on "fake news" outlets.

This is followed by questions to the International Trade Secretary Liam Fox, and a statement by Leader of the House David Lidington which might reveal details of the timetable for passing Brexit legislation through the House of Lords.

The afternoon will be dominated by backbench debates on Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territories, and Governance of the Football Association. The latter will see MPs argue that current governance structures of the FA make it impossible for the organisation to reform itself, and calls on the Government to bring forward legislation.

Meanwhile in Westminster Hall the Labour MP Chi Onwurah will lead a debate on the effect of controversial state pension changes on working-class women - an area of concern highlighted by the Women Against State Pension Inequality (Waspi) campaign.

And the Tory MP Sir Edward Leigh will head an adjournment debate on the proposed location of a holocaust memorial museum in Victoria Tower Gardens.

Friday February 10

Parliament breaks up for February recess, to return on February 20 when MPs will have a chance to debate the petition calling for President Donald Trump's State visit to the UK to be cancelled.

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