STANDING ORDERS OF THE SENATE
Sittings Department and Library of the SenateJanuary 2007
1. - Senators may organise themselves into Groups reflecting political affinities. No Senator may be a member of more than one Group, nor be compelled to join a Group.
2. - A Group shall be constituted by the presentation to the President's Office of a list of Senators who have stated they wish to belong to it. As soon as Groups are formed, and also after each renewal of the Senate, they shall publish a political statement setting out the objectives of, and resources for, the policy that they advocate. The list of members of Groups shall be published in the Journal officiel as soon as the Groups are established and after each renewal of the Senate.
3. - Groups shall establish their Bureaux without hindrance.
4. - Each Group shall have at least fifteen members, and may provide an internal service through an Administrative Secretariat, which shall manage its own rules, recruitment and method of payment.
5. - The conditions governing the physical establishment of Group Secretariats and the right of staff to access and to move freey around the Palais du Luxembourg shall be laid down by the Bureau of the Senate on the proposal of the Questeurs.
6. - The establishment in the Senate of groups defending private, local or professional interests is forbidden.
1. - Political Groupings with staff of fewer than fifteen may ally themselves to, or attach themselves for administrative purposes to a Group of their choosing with the agreement of that Group's Bureau.
2. - The same facility shall be available under the same conditions to individual Senators whose names do not appear on the lists of any Group or Grouping.
3. - A statement of Groupings and of Senators who, under the terms of this Article, have announced that they will ally themselves with, or administratively attach themselves to, a Group shall be set out after the list of the members of the Groups in question.
4. - Senators who are neither formal members of a Group, nor allied nor attached to one shall meet to elect a delegate from among themselves to represent their interests. The delegate shall have the same rights as a Group Chairman with regard to appointments to Committees and as Secretaries of the Senate.
5. - When appointments provided for under paragraph 9 of Article 3 and all of Articles 8 and 105 are being made, and in accordance with regulations governing the proportional representation of Groups, the total membership of the Groups must include, in addition to full members, those of allied and attached Groupings and of individually allied and attached Senators.
Article 7. - 1. - After each partial renewal, the Senate shall appoint the following six Standing Committees in a public sitting:
1° the Cultural Affairs Committee consisting of 57 members;
2° the Economic Affairs and Planning Committee consisting of 78 members;
3° the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Armed Forces Committee consisting of 57 members ;
4° the Social Affairs Committee consisting of 57 members;
5° the Finance, Budgetary Control and National Economic Accounts Committee consisting of 48 members;
6° the Committee for Constitutional Acts Laws, Legislation, Universal Suffrage, Standing Orders and General Administration consisting of 48 members.
2. - To take account of the increase in the number of Senators at the partial renewals of 2004 and 2007, the composition of Standing Committees shall be temporarily as follows:
1. the Social Affairs Committee shall have 54 members from October 2004, and 56 members as from October 2007;
2. the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Armed Forces Committee shall have 54 members from October 2004, and 56 members as from October 2007;
3. the Social Affairs Committee shall have 54 members from October 2004, and 56 members as from October 2007;
4. the Finance, Budgetary Control and National Economic Accounts Committee shall have 45 members from October 2004, and 47 members as from October 2007;
5. the Committee for Constitutional Acts Laws, Legislation, Universal Suffrage, Standing Orders and General Administration shall have 45 members from October 2004, and 47 members as from October 2007.
1. - After the President has been elected, the Senate shall fix the date for the sitting during which the Standing Committees shall be appointed.
2. - Before this sitting takes place, Group Bureaux and the delegate for non-aligned Senators will first meet, and then send the President the list of candidates that they have drawn up in accordance with the rule on proportionality.
3. - This list shall be posted as soon as possible. During the sitting, the President shall make it known that this has happened.
4. - Any objection to the list of candidates may be tabled in the hour following the announcement.
5. - If this objection is based on failure to comply with the rules governing proportional representation, it must be made in writing and signed by a Chairman of a Group or by at least thirty Senators.
6. - If the Senate considers the objection valid, there shall be provision for drawing up a fresh list of candidates, as set out in paragraph 2 of this Article.
7. - If the opposition is not based on failure to comply with the rules governing proportional representation, it must be made in writing and signed by three Group Chairmen or by 60 Senators.
8. - In these circumstances, if the objection is considered by the Senate, the Senate shall conduct one or more plurinominal votes in a plenary sitting.
9. - If there is no challenge by the time the deadline identified in paragraph 4 above passes, the list of candidates shall be ratified by the Senate.
10. - In the event of a vacancy on a Standing Committee, and subject to the provisions of paragraph 3 of Article 15, the Group concerned or, as appropriate, the delegate of Senators whose names do not appear on the list of any Group, shall forward to the President the name of the Senator called to occupy the vacant seat. The Senator shall be appointed under the conditions set out above.
11. - The list of Committee members shall be published in the Journal officiel.
12. - A Senator may only belong to one Standing Committee. The President of the Senate may not serve on any Standing Committee.
1. - Where the rules of an extra-parliamentary body provide that members of one or more Standing Committees have seats on it, the Committees concerned shall appoint these members, and inform the Minister concerned through the intermediary of the President of the Senate.
2. - When the Government asks the Senate to appoint one or more members to sit on an extra-parliamentary body, the President of the Senate shall invite the Standing Committee(s) for the area that the body concerns itself with to put forward the name(s) of the candidate(s). If there is any doubt as to which Committee has competence, the Senate shall give a ruling by ordinary public ballot.
3. - Each Committee may choose its own candidate(s), either from its own members or from among other members of the Senate. The President of the Committee shall send the names of the candidates to the President of the Senate.
4. - The President shall give instructions for the candidates' names to be made public. He shall give notification that this has been done at the sitting on whose agenda the designation appears.
5. - After a delay of one hour, and unless there is a challenge, the appointment of the candidate(s) shall be ratified.
6. - A challenge to the Committee's proposals may be mounted within an hour of President's announcement: any such challenge must be in writing and signed by at least thirty Senators or the Chairman of a Group.
7. - If an objection is formulated, the President shall ask the Senate whether it is to be considered. The Senate shall then give a ruling following a debate in which only one of the signatories to the objection and one speaker of a contrary opinion may be heard.
8. - If the Senate chooses not to consider the objection, the list of candidates shall be ratified.
9. - If the Senate does choose to consider the objection, the candidates are then appointed by a plurinominal vote in a plenary sitting. The candidacies must then be the subject of a declaration to the President's Office at least one hour before the ballot takes place.
10. - The procedure set out above does not apply when the rules of the extra-parliamentary body provide for a particular appointments procedure.
1. - For the appointment of members to Special Committees established under conditions in Article 16 below, a list of candidates shall be drawn up, in accordance with the rules on proportionality and following prior consultation with the Chairmen of Standing Committees, the Chairmen of Groups, and the Delegate representing non-aligned Senators.
2. - The appointment shall then proceed in accordance with regulations set out in paragraphs 3-11 of Article 8.
3. - A Special Committee shall be made up of 37 members.
1. - A Committee of Inquiry shall be set up following a vote on a draft resolution that has been tabled, sent to the competent Standing Committee, examined and discussed under the conditions established by these Standing Orders. This proposal must accurately determine either the facts that have given rise to the inquiry or the public services or national enterprises whose management the Committee of Inquiry shall examine. If a proposal relating to the setting up of a Committee of Inquiry is not referred to the Committee for Constitutional Acts Laws, Legislation, Universal Suffrage, Standing Orders and General Administration, the latter Committee shall be invited to publish an opinion stating whether the proposal complies with the provisions in Article 6 of Amended Ordinance n° 58-1100 of 17 November 1958 relating to the functioning of parliamentary assemblies. The draft resolution shall set out the number of members of the Committee of Inquiry: this may not exceed 21.
2. - For the appointment of members to Committee of Inquiry whose establishment is decided by the Senate, a list of candidates shall be drawn up in accordance with the rules on proportionality by the Chairmen of political Groups and the delegate representing non-aligned Senators. The appointment shall then proceed in accordance with the rules set out in paragraphs 3-11 of Article 8.
3 and 4. Repealed by the resolution of 18 December 1991.
1. - By an agreement between the Senate and the National Assembly, the number of representatives of each assembly on Joint Committees provided for in paragraph 2 of Article 45 of the Constitution shall be fixed at 7.
2. - Senate representatives on these Committees shall be appointed under conditions set out below.
3. - A list of candidates shall be drawn up by the competent Committee, and the Chairman of the Committee shall then pass the list to the President of the Senate, who shall give instruction for the list to be posted up and inform the Senate thereof in the course of a public sitting.
4. - The appointment shall then proceed in accordance with the rules set out in paragraphs 5-9 of Article 9.
5. - Substitutes shall be appointed in the same way. They are only required to vote insofar as it is necessary to maintain parity between the two assemblies. Substitutes shall be called to serve in the order they are elected.