DEMOCRATIC Party chief Martin Lee Chu-ming may face disciplinary action from his own party over legislator Lau Chin-shek's resignation. He admitted at a central standing committee meeting last night that he had 'gone too far' when he told Mr Lau on Tuesday that if he insisted on quitting the Legislative Council immediately he would have to leave the party as well. Democratic Party core members, surprised by Mr Lee's remarks, called the meeting to question him. Mr Lee acknowledged his comments were not in line with a decision of the central committee on Friday. Mr Lau was originally to tender his resignation to Governor Chris Patten on Tuesday morning in protest at the Government's withdrawal of a labour bill he had amended. But he postponed the decision after a discussion with Mr Lee, and party vice-chairmen Yeung Sum and Anthony Cheung Bing-leung. Mr Lee told him he would have to quit the party if he insisted on resigning immediately. As a result M r Lau postponed his resignation for the sake of party unity. Neither Mr Yeung nor Mr Cheung raised objections to Mr Lee's directive. Later in the day, Mr Lau handed in his resignation, but said he would delay its effect. Explaining his move, Mr Lee said: 'I was too eager to keep him, and went too far.' He said he was willing to take any disciplinary action decided by the party's central committee at a meeting scheduled for Saturday. Asked whether he had apologised to the core members, Mr Lee said: 'I have already said I went too far. That was an apology. 'I am a man of guilt for thousand years,' he added, in a reference to a comment made about Mr Patten by senior Chinese official Lu Ping. Mr Lau resigned last week after the withdrawal of legislation he had amended to increase the ceiling on long service and severance payments from $180,000 to $230,000. Mr Lee said he believed Mr Lau should not quit Legco, because the Government had since put forward a new proposal, which would raise the ceiling to $260,000. However, the proposal ran into trouble yesterday when employers said they were against it. Their representatives on the Labour Advisory Board - which agreed to the original package and will have to approve the new one - said they would put forward a counter-proposal at a board meeting tomorrow. It is understood that at a meeting yesterday of the five major chambers of commerce, some representatives criticised the proposal as put forward simply to please legislators and the public. Complaints were also made that too little time had been allowed for the drama aroused by Mr Lau's resignation to subside. Employers hoped their counter-proposal would settle the dispute 'once and for all'. A source said they did not want further reviews of the package. 'The new package will not follow exactly the $260,000 proposal, but will be similar,' the source said. But while the employers were unhappy with the government package, unionists softened their opposition.