FlagPost — Parliamentary Library Blog

In 1913 the Commonwealth quarantined Sydney for 145 days

Commonwealth quarantine legislation, from the original form of the Quarantine Act 1908 through to the current Biosecurity Act 2015, has always included provisions for the Commonwealth to declare movement restrictions, quarantines and other emergency measures.  Read more...

What’s new in statistics . . .

This month: 2018-19 Tax Statistics from the ATO, types of business in Australia, how many young people, and the average age of mothers and babies. Read more...

Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Authority Amendment (Governance and Other Measures) Bill 2021

The Bill was introduced in the House of Representatives on 16 June 2021. This FlagPost has been published in lieu of a Bills Digest. Purpose The main purpose of the Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Authority Amendment (Governance and Other Measures) Bill 2021 (the Bill) is to reverse certain governance arrangements implemented in July 2017. It proposes amendments to the Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Authority Act 2008 (the Act). The Australian Organ and Tissue Donation and Transplantation Authority (the OTA) is an independent statutory agency within the Health portfolio. It delivers a national program to improve organ and tissue donation and... Read more...

Cryptocurrencies as money: an explainer

Cryptocurrencies are receiving a lot of publicity, including stories of ‘bitcoin millionaires’ and ‘mining operations’ raising images of a latter day gold rush. But cryptocurrencies probably remain a bit of a mystery to many. This FlagPost provides a brief and simple explanation of why cryptocurrencies (cryptos) have both the form and function of money, but do not function as well as normal government-backed (fiat) money. The FlagPost does not address the benefits and costs of a cashless economy, the technical aspects of the theory of money, the goals and mechanisms of monetary policy or how specific cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, work.  Read more...

Who works at Parliament House?

After two weeks of sittings, Parliament adjourns for the winter break, with the corridors no longer crowded with parliamentarians and staff. But who actually works in Parliament House?  Read more...

Snapshot of employment by industry, 2021

The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) releases quarterly estimates of employed people by industry (in their main job, if a person holds more than one job) in the publication Labour Force, Australia, Detailed. Quarterly data is available since November 1984, with the most recent data being February 2021. Estimates of employment by industry division are currently available in seasonally adjusted and original series. The ABS suspended the trend series in April 2020 due to the uncertainty of estimate adjustments related to the COVID-19 pandemic. For finer level detail on industry of employment (e.g. sub-division), the ABS release original (unadjusted) estimates. Industry data is classified ... Read more...

Medical and Midwife Indemnity Legislation Amendment Bill 2021

On 27 May 2021, the Minister for Health, Greg Hunt, introduced the Medical and Midwife Indemnity Legislation Amendment Bill 2021. The stated purpose of the Bill is to ensure that claims made against all private practising midwives are eligible under the Commonwealth’s medical and midwife indemnity schemes. The estimated impact on the fiscal balance over the forward estimates is $0.9 million. Read more...

Aged Care and Other Legislation Amendment (Royal Commission Response No. 1) Bill 2021

On 27 May 2021, the Minister for Health and Aged Care, Greg Hunt, introduced the Aged Care and Other Legislation Amendment (Royal Commission Response No. 1) Bill 2021 (the Bill) into the House of Representatives. The Bill was referred to the Community Affairs Legislation Committee, which tabled its report on 11 June 2021. The Committee recommended that the Bill be passed. This FlagPost provides a brief overview of existing restraints regulation in aged care, recommendations from recent reports, and the amendments proposed by the Bill.   Read more...

Fuel Security Bill 2021

The Fuel Security Bill 2021 (the Bill) and the associated Fuel Security (Consequential and Transitional Provisions) Bill 2021 were introduced into the House of Representatives on 26 May 2021. In short, the Bill aims to support Australia’s fuel security by: creating a minimum stock holding obligation whereby industry will be required to maintain a certain level of fuel stocks and creating a fuel security services payment to subsidise industry to continue refining activities until 30 June 2027. Details of the fuel security payments will be outlined further in the Ministerial Rules which are yet to be published. Read more...

Farm Household Support Amendment (Debt Waiver) Bill 2021

The Farm Household Support Amendment (Debt Waiver) Bill 2021 (the Bill) amends the Farm Household Support Act 2014 (the FHS Act) to permanently waive the repayment of certain classes of debt owed by Farm Household Allowance (FHA) recipients. These debts have arisen as a result of overpayments of the FHA due to inaccurate estimates of business income provided by claimants. According to the Explanatory Memorandum, the amendments in the Bill will have a total financial cost of $65.6 million, including $51.0 million in foregone revenue from debts that would otherwise have been repaid (p. 2). In his second reading speech, Assistant Treasurer Michael Sukkar stated that the Bill will provide debt r... Read more...

FlagPost

Flagpost is a blog on current issues of interest to members of the Australian Parliament

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