Chapter 1 - Introduction
On 9 May 2007, the Senate referred the following documents to the
Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport (the committee)
for examination and report in relation to the Transport and Regional Services
portfolio and the Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry portfolio:
- Particulars of certain proposed expenditure in respect of the
year ending on 30 June 2008;
- Particulars of proposed expenditure in respect of the year ending
on 30 June 2008;
- Particulars of certain proposed supplementary expenditure in
respect of the year ending on 30 June 2007; and
- Particulars of proposed supplementary expenditure in respect of
the year ending on 30 June 2007.
The committee was required to report to the Senate on its consideration
of 2007-2008 Budget estimates on 19 June 2007.
The committee considered the Portfolio Budget Statements 2007-2008 for
both portfolios at hearings on 21, 22, 23 and 24 May 2007. The hearings were
conducted in accordance with the agreed agenda as follows:
- Monday 21 May 2007 – Transport and Regional Services portfolio;
- Tuesday 22 May 2007 – Transport and Regional Services portfolio;
- Wednesday 23 May 2007 – Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
- Thursday 24 May 2007 – Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry
The committee heard evidence from Senator the Hon David Johnston, Minister
for Justice and Customs, representing the Minister for Transport and Regional
Services and the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads and from
Senator the Hon Eric Abetz, Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation,
representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. Evidence was
also provided by Mr Mike Taylor, Secretary of the Department of Transport and Regional
Services, Dr Conall O'Connell, Secretary of the Department of Agriculture,
Fisheries and Forestry, and officers representing the departments and agencies
covered by the estimates before the committee.
The committee thanks the ministers, departmental secretaries and
officers for their assistance and cooperation during the hearings.
Questions on Notice
In accordance with Standing Order 26, the committee is required to set a
date for the lodgement of written answers and additional information. The
committee requested that written answers and additional information be
submitted by Thursday, 26 July 2007.
Answers to questions taken on notice at the committee's budget estimates
hearings will be tabled in the Senate in separate volumes entitled 'Additional
information relating to the examination of budget estimates 2007-2008 – May
2007 – Senate Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport'.
Documents not suitable for inclusion in the additional information volumes will
be available on request from the committee secretariat.
Answers to questions on notice received from departments will also be
posted in the committee's website at a later date.
Note on References
References to the Hansard transcript are to the proof Hansard: page
numbers my vary between the proof and the official Hansard transcript.
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