Senate Daily Summary - 12 September 2012

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No. 49/2012

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

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The Senate met from 9.30 am until 7.28 pm


Bills and related documents

Bills considered

The following bills were introduced

  • Judicial Misbehaviour and Incapacity (Parliamentary Commissions) Bill 2012 and a related bill [passed by the House of Representatives on 10 September 2012]
  • Minerals Resource Rent Tax Amendment (Protecting Revenue) Bill 2012 [private senator’s bill]
  • National Portrait Gallery of Australia Bill 2012 and a related bill [passed by the House of Representatives on 11 September 2012]

The following bill was debated

  • Broadcasting Services Amendment (Anti-siphoning) Bill 2012–second reading debate commenced–1 Australian Greens second reading amendment to be determined [first speaker]

Notice of motion to introduce a private senator’s bill

  • Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Making Marine Parks Accountable) Bill 2012–notice given by Senator Colbeck

See Committees for details of reports relating to legislation


Scheduled public committee hearings 
Committee reports

Reports tabled

Reports on legislation

  • Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission Bill 2012 and 2 related bills–Community Affairs Legislation Committee [report]
  • Maritime Powers Bill 2012 and a related bill–Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee [report]

Other reports

  • Human Rights Joint Committee–2nd report of 2012–Examination of legislation in accordance with the Human Rights (Parliamentary Scrutiny) Act 2011: Bills introduced 14 to 23 August 2012; Legislative instruments registered with the Federal Register of Legislative Instrument 22 July to 23 August 2012 [a motion to take note of the report was agreed to]
  • Legislation committees–Examination of annual reports tabled by 30 April 2012
  • Scrutiny of Bills Committee–Alert Digest No. 10 and 10th report of 2012 [contains assessments of bills on civil liberties and related grounds]

New inquiry

The Senate referred matters relating to the potatoes import risk analysis to the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee to report by 21 November 2012.

Proposed reference

The Senate did not agree to refer matters relating to the conduct of certain Reserve Bank of Australia subsidiaries to the Economics References Committee

Motion negatived

The Senate did not agree to a motion to require the publication of documents received by the Education, Employment and Workplace Relations Legislation Committee relating to the Fair Work Australia investigations into the Health Services Union.

Meetings during the sitting of the Senate

The Senate authorised the following meetings to be held while the Senate is sitting:

  • Corporations and Financial Services Joint Committee–12 September 2012 from 4.30 pm–public meeting–Oversight of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission
  • Education, Employment and Workplace Relations References Committee–17 September 2012 from 6.30 pm–public meeting–Allowance payment system

Reporting date extended

The Senate extended the reporting date for the inquiry of the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee into the Foreign Investment Review Board national interest test to 28 November 2012.

Notices of motion

To refer a matter to a committee

  • Aircraft crash near Norfolk Island–Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee–to report by 29 November 2012–notice given by Senator Xenophon

To hold meetings when the Senate is sitting

  • Economics Legislation Committee–13 September 2012 from 3.30 pm–private meeting
  • Electricity Prices Select Committee–17 September 2012 from 4.45 pm–private meeting
  • Public Works Joint Committee–13 September 2012 from 5.00 pm–public meeting for the purpose of making an inspection


The Senate agreed to the following changes to committee membership:

  • National Broadband Network Joint Committee–Senators Ruston and Sinodinos appointed as participating members
  • Public Accounts and Audit Joint Committee–Senator Kroger discharged and Senator Ruston appointed
  • Treaties Joint Committee–Senator Birmingham discharged and Senator McKenzie appointed


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

  • A clerk’s document was tabled [legislative instruments and other documents required by statute to be tabled]

Approval of designation

The Senate approved the designation of the Republic of Nauru as a regional processing country [homepage] [first speaker].

Orders for the production of documents

Orders with continuing effect

Departmental and agency contracts published on the Internet

A letter of advice for Cancer Australia was 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]

Indexed lists of departmental and agency files published on the Internet

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

Documents tabled

Ministerial statements tabled

The Minister for Tertiary Education, Skills, Science and Research (Senator Evans) tabled ministerial statements about–

  • Government affordability assistance and record child care growth
  • progress towards a National Disability Insurance Scheme [a motion to take note of the statement was debated – first speaker]

Other business

Questions without notice and issues arising during question time–first question
Matters of public interest debate–first speaker
Adjournment debate–first speaker

Motions agreed to

Motions negatived

Matter of public importance discussed

Personal explanation

Senator Faulkner made a personal explanation relating to an online searchable database of profiles of members of parliament showing their financial interests.

Notices of motion

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

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Related resources

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Contact details

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