Odgers' Australian Senate Practice Thirteenth Edition

Chapter 14 - Committee of the whole proceedings

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Reporting progress

The equivalent of adjourning consideration of a matter in committee of the whole is to report progress. The committee reports to the Senate that the committee has considered the matter referred to it, has made progress, and seeks leave to sit again at some future time for further consideration. The Senate then normally, by motion, gives the committee leave to sit again at a later time, and consideration of the matter in committee of the whole then becomes an order of the day for that later time.

A motion to report progress and seek leave to sit again may be moved at any time in committee by any senator, but subject to the 15 minute rule concerning the repetition of such motions. The motion to report progress is not debatable.[23]

Words may be added to the motion to report progress to indicate that deferral of consideration of the matter before the committee is sought for a particular purpose. For example, consideration of a bill may be deferred until a minister provides answers to questions or relevant documents. By adopting the committee’s report the Senate endorses the committee’s decision that the matter be deferred for the specified purpose.[24]

23. SO 148(2), 144(6).
24. 20/5/1975, J.655-7.