Chapter 6 | The Speaker, Deputy Speakers and officers

The Office of Speaker


The Speaker today

Impartiality of the Chair

Period in office


Election of Speaker

Powers, functions and duties


Ceremonial and traditional



Powers and functions under the standing orders

Discretionary powers

Participation in debate



Control over Parliament House

Parliamentary administration

Services to Members

Ex officio membership of committees and associations

Absence of Speaker and vacancy in office


Acting Speaker

Deemed Speaker

The Speaker’s vote

Exercise of the casting vote

To enable a further decision of the House

To enable debate to continue

To decide a matter before the House

Speaker voting in committee

Sources of procedural authority


Standing orders

Traditional practice

Speaker’s rulings

Points of order

Dissent from rulings

Interpretation of the Constitution or the law

Criticism of Speaker’s actions and conduct

Criticism of Speaker in the House

Reflections on Speaker made outside the House

Speaker’s authority not supported by the House

Deputy Speaker 

Election of Deputy Speaker

Deputy Speaker as Chair of House

Resignation and vacancy

Second Deputy Speaker

Speaker’s panel

Staff of the House and administration

The Parliamentary Service Act

Principal staff of the House

The Clerk of the House

Role and functions of the Clerk

Deputy Clerk and senior staff


The Department of the House of Representatives

The other parliamentary departments

Department of the Senate

Department of Parliamentary Services

Parliamentary Budget Office

Bodies advising the Presiding Officers

Parliamentary finances

House Appropriations and Administration Committee