Senate Daily Summary - 18 June 2012

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No. 27/2012

Monday, 18 June 2012

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The Senate met from 10.00 am until 10.27 pm

Senators

Senator Smith gave his first speech .

The President announced the resignations, on 1 June and 15 June 2012 respectively, of Senators Sherry and Bob Brown.

Legislation

Bills and related documents

Bills considered

The following bills were introduced

  • Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 1) 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 10 May 2012]
  • Aviation Transport Security Amendment (Screening) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 9 May 2012]
  • Broadcasting Services Amendment (Digital Television) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 30 May 2012]
  • Clean Energy Finance Corporation Bill 2012
  • Clean Energy Legislation Amendment Bill 2012
  • Clean Energy (Customs Tariff Amendment) Bill 2012
    Clean Energy (Excise Tariff Legislation Amendment) Bill 2012
    [passed by the House of Representatives on 30 May 2012]
  • Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Amendment (Independent Expert Scientific Committee on Coal Seam Gas and Large Coal Mining Development) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 29 May 2012]
  • National Health Amendment (Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 31 May 2012]
  • National Vocational Education and Training Regulator (Charges) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 23 May 2012]
  • Paid Parental Leave and Other Legislation Amendment (Dad and Partner Pay and Other Measures) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 24 May 2012]
  • Parliamentary Counsel and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 23 May 2012]
  • Skills Australia Amendment (Australian Workforce and Productivity Agency) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 22 May 2012]
  • Social Security and Other Legislation Amendment (2012 Budget and Other Measures) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 29 May 2012]
  • Superannuation Legislation Amendment (Trustee Obligations and Prudential Standards) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 23 May 2012]
  • Tax Laws Amendment (Medicare Levy and Medicare Levy Surcharge) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 22 May 2012]

The following bills were introduced, debated and passed

  • Corporations Amendment (Proxy Voting) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 31 May 2012] [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]
  • National Health Reform Amendment (Administrator and National Health Funding Body) Bill 2012 and a related bill [passed by the House of Representatives on 31 May 2012] [first speaker] [These bills will now be assented to]
  • Shipping Reform (Tax Incentives) Bill 2012 and 4 related bills [passed by the House of Representatives on 31 May 2012] [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]
  • Tax and Superannuation Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No. 1) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 22 May 2012] [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]
  • Tax Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No. 3) Bill 2012 and 2 related bills–second reading debate commenced [passed by the House of Representatives on 31 May 2012] [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]
  • Telecommunications Interception and Other Legislation Amendment (State Bodies) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 29 May 2012] [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]

The following bills were passed

  • Antarctic Treaty (Environment Protection) Amendment Bill 2011 [The bill will now be assented to]
  • Classification (Publications, Films and Computer Games) Amendment (R 18+ Computer Games) Bill 2012 [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]
  • Corporations Legislation Amendment (Audit Enhancement) Bill 2012 [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]
  • Health Insurance Amendment (Professional Services Review) Bill 2012 [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]
  • National Water Commission Amendment Bill 2012 [first speaker] [The House of Representatives will now consider the bill]
  • Tax Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No. 1) Bill 2012 [first speaker] [The bill will now be assented to]

Notices of motion

To introduce a private senator’s bill

  • Migration and Security Legislation Amendment (Review of Security Assessments) Bill 2012–notice given by Senator Hanson-Young

To vary the days and hours of meeting and routine of business and consider bills under a limitation of time

Notices of motion were given by the Parliamentary Secretary for School Education and Workplace Relations (Senator Collins) to vary the hours of meeting and the routine of business for various days, to sit an extra day and to consider various bills under limitations of time.

Bills assented to

Assent to a number of laws was reported in the Senate.

See Committees for details of reports relating to legislation

Committees

Scheduled public committee hearings

Committee reports 

Reports tabled

Reports on legislation

  • Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 1) 2012–Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee [report]
  • Australian Human Rights Commission Amendment (National Children’s Commissioner) Bill 2012–Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee [report]
  • Aviation Transport Security Amendment (Screening) Bill 2012–Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee–Interim and final reports [final report]
  • Clean Energy Legislation Amendment Bill 2012 and 2 related bills–Economics Legislation Committee [report]
  • Marriage Amendment Bill 2012–Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee–Interim report [reporting date for the final report extended to 25 June 2012]
  • Shipping Reform (Tax Incentives) Bill 2012 and 4 related bills–Economics Legislation Committee [report]
  • Social Security and Other Legislation Amendment (2012 Budget and Other Measures) Bill 2012–Community Affairs Legislation Committee [report]
  • Superannuation Legislation Amendment (Stronger Super) Bill 2012 and a related bill–Corporations and Financial Services Joint Committee [report]
  • Tax Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No. 3) Bill 2012 and 2 related bills–Economics Legislation Committee [report]

Other reports

  • Community Affairs References Committee–The role of the Therapeutic Goods Administration regarding medical devices, particularly Poly Implant Prothese (PIP) breast implants [report]
  • Corporations and Financial Services Joint Committee–
    • Collapse of Trio Capital [report]
    • Statutory oversight of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission [report] [a motion was moved to take note of the report]
  • Education, Employment and Workplace Relations References Committee–Higher education and skills training for agriculture and agribusiness–Interim report [reporting date for the final report extended to 21 June 2012]
  • Electoral Matters Joint Committee–Australian parliamentary delegation to Indonesia and Tonga, 24 September to 1 October 2011 [report]
  • Intelligence and Security Joint Committee–Review of the re-listing of Ansar al‑Islam, Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, Jaish-e-Mohammad and Lashkar‑e‑Jhangvi as terrorist organisations [report] [a motion to take note of the report was agreed to]
  • Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee–Marriage visa classes–Interim report [reporting date for the final report extended to 25 June 2012]
  • Public Accounts and Audit Joint Committee–
    • 429th report–Review of the 2010-11 Defence Materiel Organisation major projects report [report]
    • 430th report–Review of Auditor-General’s reports nos 47 (2010-11) to 9 (2011‑12) and reports nos 10 to 23 (2011-12) [report]

Documents tabled

  • Scrutiny of Bills Committee–Letter from the President of the Law Council of Australia (Ms Gale) relating to the report on the future direction and role of the committee
  • Public Accounts and Audit Joint Committee–
    • Executive minutes on report no. 426–Ninth biannual hearing with the Commissioner of Taxation
    • Executive minutes on report no. 428–Review of Auditor-General’s reports nos 16 to 46 (2010-11)
    • Statement–Appointment of the Parliamentary Budget Officer

Government responses tabled

  • Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee–Australia’s arrangement with Malaysia in relation to asylum seekers
  • Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee–Australia’s future oil supply and alternative transport fuels [a motion to take note of the response was debated – first speaker]
  • Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Joint Committee–Review of the Defence annual report 2009-10 [response]

Meetings during the sitting of the Senate

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

  • Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity Joint Committee–18 June 2012 from 11.00 am–private meeting otherwise than in accordance with standing order 33(1)
  • Gambling Reform Joint Select Committee–18 June 2012 from 12.45 pm–public meeting–Prevention and treatment of problem gambling

Reporting dates extended

The Senate extended reporting dates for the following inquiries:

  • Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee–
  • Courts Legislation Amendment (Judicial Complaints) Bill 2012 and a related bills–to report by 13 July 2012
  • Migration Legislation Amendment (Student Visas) Bill 2012–to report by 19 June 2012
  • Passenger Movement Charge Amendment Bill 2012–to report by 19 June 2012
  • Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee–Wheat Export Marketing Amendment Bill 2012–to report by 25 June 2012

Notices of motion

To refer a matter to a committee

  • Fresh pineapple imports–Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee–to report by 10 October 2012–notice given by Senator Boswell

To hold meetings when the Senate is sitting

  • Australian Commission for Law Enforcement Integrity Joint Committee–21 June 2012 from 11.00 am–private meeting otherwise than in accordance with standing order 33(1)
  • Cyber Safety Joint Select Committee–27 June 2012 from 4.15 pm to 5.30 pm–public meeting
  • Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee–21 June 2012 from 3.45 pm–private meeting otherwise than in accordance with standing order 33(1)
  • Migration Joint Committee–27 June 2012 from 10.30 am to 12.30 pm–public meeting
  • Treaties Joint Committee–
    • 19 June 2012 from 8.15 pm to 9.30 pm–private meeting otherwise than in accordance with standing order 33(1)
    • 25 June 2012 from 10.00 am to noon–public meeting

To extend reporting deadlines

  • Community Affairs References Committee–Health services and medical professionals in rural areas–to report by 15 August 2012
  • Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee–Detention of minors–to report by 19 September 2012

Membership

The Senate agreed to discharge Senator McEwen as a substitute member of the Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation 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]

Notice of intention to withdraw notice

Senator Colbeck gave notice of intention to withdraw a notice of motion to disallow the Fishing Levy Regulations 2011 as contained in Select Legislative Instrument 2011 No. 241 and made under the Fishing Levy Act 1991 and the Fisheries Management Act 1991.

Orders for the production of documents

Orders with continuing effect

Departmental and agency appointments and vacancies
Letters of advice for the various portfolios were tabled  [Lists of appointments made and existing vacancies are required to be tabled 7 days before the commencement of budget, supplementary budget and additional estimates hearings]

Departmental and agency grants
Letters of advice for various agencies were tabled [Lists of all grants approved are required to be tabled 7 days before the commencement of budget, supplementary budget and additional estimates hearings]

Health Insurance–Anti-competitive practices
A report by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission on anti‑competitive and other practices by health funds and providers in relation to private health insurance was tabled [The report was tabled in response to the order of the Senate agreed to on 25 March 1999 on the motion of Senator Harradine and amended on 18 September 2002]

Indexed lists of departmental and agency files published on the Internet
A statement of compliance for the Commonwealth Ombudsman was tabled[Letters of advice about certain files created by departments and agencies are required to be tabled twice a year]

Documents tabled

  • Auditor-General–
    • Audit reports nos 33 to 42 of 2011-12 [see Journals entries 36 and 47]
    • Report–IT audit capability and resourcing: Australian National Audit Office
  • Government documents
  • Responses to Senate resolutions about–
    • Arrest in Egypt of Mr Austin Mackell–from the Minister for Foreign Affairs (Senator Bob Carr) [resolution agreed to on 19 March 2012]
    • Chronic Disease Dental Scheme–from the Minister for Health (Ms Plibersek) [resolution agreed to on 21 March 2012]
    • Human rights in Iran–from the Minister for Foreign Affairs (Senator Bob Carr) [resolution agreed to on 1 March 2012]
    • Indigenous Australians and closing the gap–from the Minister for Indigenous Health (Mr Snowden) [resolution agreed to on 22 March 2012]
    • World Tuberculosis Day–from the Minister for Foreign Affairs (Senator Bob Carr) [resolution agreed to on 22 March 2012]

Ministerial statements tabled

The Parliamentary Secretary for Sustainability and Urban Water (Senator Farrell) tabled ministerial statements about–

  • 20th anniversary of the Mabo native title decision
  • Afghanistan
  • Government response to the review of military compensation arrangements [a motion was moved to take note of the statement]

Other business

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

Adjournment debate–first speaker

Motions negatived

Death of former member

The Deputy President (Senator Parry) informed the Senate of the death, on 12 June 2012, of the Honourable Francis (Frank) John Walker, QC, a former minister and member of the House of Representatives for the division of Robertson from 1990 to 1996. A motion moved by the Leader of the Government in the Senate (Senator Evans) was carried [first speaker].

Matter of public importance discussed

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 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.

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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