Tuesday, 26 August 2008

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No. 45/2008

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The Senate met from 12.00 noon until 6.00pm

Senators

New senators

Certificates of election for senators elected on 24 November 2007 to serve in the Senate from 1 July 2008 were tabled. The senators made and subscribed the oath or affirmation of allegiance.

Death of former senators

The President informed the Senate of the deaths of two former senators:

  • on 10 July 2008, Donald Michael Devitt , a senator for Tasmania from 1965 to 1978– motion moved by the Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate ( Senator Conroy ) and supported
  • on 13 July 2008, the Honourable Peter Drew Durack, a senator for Western Australia from 1971 to 1993– motion moved by the Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate ( Senator Conroy ) and supported

Election of officers

Senators Hogg (ALP, Qld) and Milne (AG, Tas) were both proposed to take the office of President of the Senate. Senator Hogg was declared elected after a ballot was held (Senator Hogg 68 votes, Senator Milne 6 votes).

Senator Ferguson (LP, SA) was elected unopposed to take the office of Deputy President of the Senate and Chair of Committees.

Legislation

Bills and related documents available on BillsNet < www.aph.gov.au/bills/index.htm >

Notices of motion

To introduce private senators’ bills

  • Building and Construction Industry (Restoring Workplace Rights) Bill 2008–notice given by Senator Siewert
  • Food Safety (Trans Fats) Bill 2008–notice given by Senator Siewert

Bills assented to

Assent to a number of laws was reported in the Senate

See Committees for details of reports relating to legislation

Committees

For scheduled public committee hearings

For committee reports

Reports tabled

Reports on legislation

  • National Health Amendment (Pharmaceutical and Other Benefits—Cost Recovery) Bill 2008–Community Affairs Committee
  • Save Our Solar (Solar Rebate Protection) Bill 2008 [No. 2]– Environment, Communications and the Arts Committee–Interim report and final report [A motion to take note of the report was debated]
  • Tax Laws Amendment (2008 Measures No. 4) Bill 2008–Economics Committee
  • Trade Practices (Creeping Acquisitions) Amendment Bill 2007 [2008]–Economics Committee
  • Trade Practices Legislation Amendment Bill 2008–Economics Committee

Other reports

  • Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee–Australia’s involvement in peacekeeping operations–Interim report and final report [A motion to take note of the report was debated]
  • National Capital and External Territories Joint Committee–The way forward – Inquiry into the role of the National Capital Authority [A motion to take note of the report was debated]
  • Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee–Administration of the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) and related matters–Interim report
  • Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee–Implementation, operation and administration of the legislation underpinning Carbon Sink Forests–Interim report [reporting date for the final report extended to 28 August 2008]

Additional information tabled

  • Alcohol Toll Reduction Bill 2007 [2008]–Community Affairs Committee
  • National Health Amendment (Pharmaceutical and Other Benefits—Cost Recovery) Bill 2008–Community Affairs Committee

Government responses tabled

  • Environment, Communications, Information Technology and the Arts Committee–Indigenous art: Securing the future–Australia’s Indigenous visual arts and craft sector
  • Finance and Public Administration Committee–Departmental and agency contracts: Second report on the operation of the Senate order for the production of lists of departmental and agency contracts (2003-06)

Proposed reference

The Senate debated a motion moved by the Leader of the Australian Greens ( Senator Bob Brown ) to refer matters relating to the Exclusive Brethren to the Community Affairs Committee. The debate will continue on the next day of sitting.

Recommendation endorsed

The Senate agreed to endorse the recommendation of the Community Affairs Committee contained in its report on the 2008-09 Budget estimates.

Notices of motion given

To extend reporting deadlines:

  • Family Law Amendment (De Facto Financial Matters and Other Measures) Bill 2008–Legal and Constitutional Affairs Committee–to report by 28 August 2008
  • Lobbying code of conduct –Finance and Public Administration Committee–to report by 3 September 2008
  • State Government Financial Management Select Committee–to report by 17 September 2008
  • Waste management in Australia and the Drink Container Recycling Bill 2008–Environment, Communications and the Arts Committee–to report by 3 September 2008

To refer matters to committees:

  • Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2008–Environment, Communications and the Arts Committee–to report by 10 November 2008–notice given by the Leader of the Family First Party (Senator Fielding)
  • Provision of water from and sustainable management of the Murray-Darling Basin system–Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee–notice given by Senator Hanson-Young, the Leader of the Australian Greens (Senator Bob Brown) and Senators Siewert and Xenophon
  • Sourcing and delivery of water to the Coorong and Lower Lakes –Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee–to report by 30 September 2008–notice given by the Minister for Climate Change and Water (Senator Wong)

Membership

The Senate appointed the Leader of the Family First Party ( Senator Fielding ) as a participating member of the Regional and Remote Indigenous Communities Select Committee and the National Broadband Network Select Committee.

Documents

Delegated legislation

See Disallowance Alert for a complete list of notices of motion to disallow (and outcomes)

  • Clerk’s documents were tabled [legislative instruments and other documents required by statute to be tabled, including Governor-General’s Proclamations]

Notices of motion withdrawn

The Chair of the Standing Committee on Regulations and Ordinances ( Senator Wortley ) withdrew notices of motion to disallow 4 instruments.

See Documents for details of instruments [Clerk’s documents] tabled

Orders for the production of documents

Notices of motion given

The following notices of motion were given requiring Ministers to table documents:

  • Documents relating to the potential marine impact of effluent from the Gunns pulp mill–no later than 4.00pm on 28 August 2008–notice given by Senator Milne
  • Minister for Climate Change and Water (Senator Wong) to table documents relating to the Coorong and Lower Lakes–no later than 12 noon on 28 August 2008–notice given by Senators Bernardi, Birmingham, Ferguson, Fisher and Minchin

Orders with continuing effect

Indexed lists of departmental and agency files published on the Internet

Statements of compliance for the various agencies were tabled [Letters of advice about certain files created by departments and agencies are required to be tabled twice a year]

Departmental and agency contracts published on the Internet

Statements of compliance for various agencies were tabled [Letters of advice about certain contracts valued at $100 000 or more entered into by departments and agencies are required to be tabled twice a year]

Unproclaimed legislation

A document was tabled showing details of unproclaimed Acts, together with a statement of reasons for non-proclamation and a timetable for their operation [Standing order 139(2) requires tabling before 31 August each year]

Documents tabled

  • 39th Conference of Presiding Officers and Clerks, Adelaide, South Australia, 5 to 11 July 2008–Report
  • Auditor-General– Audit report no. 46 of 2007-08 and nos 1 and 2 of 2008-09
  • Business of the Senate–1 January to 30 June 2008 [a digest of all business considered by the Senate in the first half of 2008]
  • Government documents [see Journals entries nos 6 and 31]
  • Questions on notice summary–12 February to 30 June 2008
  • 4 petitions

Ministerial statement tabled

The Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Health and Ageing ( Senator McLucas ) tabled a ministerial statement about the World Trade Organization.

Other business

Questions without notice and issues arising during question time–first question

Death of Signaller Sean Patrick McCarthy

The Leader of the Government in the Senate ( Senator Evans ) moved that the Senate records its deep regret at the death of Signaller Sean Patrick McCarthy while on combat operations in Afghanistan . The motion was supported.

Notices of motion

Notices of motion given today are available in the Senate Journals.

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Online

The Senate Daily Summary is available on the Internet at www.aph.gov.au/senate

It is issued by the Senate Table Office as a convenient summary of each day's proceedings in the Senate. For a complete account see the official record, the Journals of the Senate, on the Internet at http://www.aph.gov.au/senate/pubs/index.htm

Related resources

The Order of Business (or Senate Red') and the Dynamic Red (which updates the Order of Business throughout the sitting day) are also available on the Internet at www.aph.gov.au/senate

Contact details

Inquiries, comments and suggestions:
phone 6277 3021
e-mail: sds@aph.gov.au

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