Proposal for Hybrid Sitting of the House of Assembly
All members of the Nova Scotia House of Assembly have been sent a proposal endorsed by the house Leaders of all three recognized parties providing for the upcoming sitting of the house to occur by means of hybrid proceedings, in which some members attend in person and others attend by videoconference. If the members agree, the house will meet in hybrid proceedings when the Third Session of the 63rd General Assembly opens on Tuesday, March 9. At that time, a motion will be put forward by the Government House leader to provide for modifications to the Rules and Forms of Procedure of the House of Assembly necessary for the conduct of hybrid proceedings.
Under the proposal for a hybrid sitting, attendance in the house will be limited to the speaker, three members from the caucus of each recognized party and the independent members of the assembly. The reduced attendance in the chamber is necessary to provide for physical distancing in the legislative chamber. All other members will participate by video conference. The modifications to the rules are intended to ensure that hybrid proceedings are conducted as nearly in conformity with the existing rules as possible and that all members appearing by videoconference are able to exercise their rights and privileges as fully as if they were appearing in person.
If adopted, the motion governing hybrid proceedings will only apply to the upcoming winter/spring sitting of the assembly. The speaker has written Dr. Robert Strang, Nova Scotia's chief medical officer of health, to advise him of the proposal.