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Senate Daily Summary - 21 June 2012

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No. 30/2012

Thursday, 21 June 2012

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The Senate met from 9.30 am until 10.25 pm

New senators

Senators Thorp and Whish-Wilson were sworn in as senators to fill vacancies in the representation of Tasmania.


Bills and related documents

Bills considered

The following bills were introduced

  • Appropriation Bill (No. 5) 2011-2012
    Appropriation Bill (No. 6) 2011-2012
    [passed by the House of Representatives on 20 June 2012]
  • Appropriation (Parliamentary Departments) Bill (No. 1) 2012-2013
    Appropriation Bill (No. 1) 2012-2013
    Appropriation Bill (No. 2) 2012-2013
    [passed by the House of Representatives on 20 June 2012]
  • Australian Human Rights Commission Amendment (National Children’s Commissioner) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 21 June 2012]
  • Broadcasting Services Amendment (Improved Access to Television Services) Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 20 June 2012]
  • Passenger Movement Charge Amendment Bill 2012 [passed by the House of Representatives on 20 June 2012]
  • Tax Laws Amendment (2012 Measures No. 2) Bill 2012
    Pay As You Go Withholding Non-compliance Tax Bill 2012
    [passed by the House of Representatives on 20 June 2012]

The following bill was debated

  • Health Insurance (Dental Services) Bill 2012 [No. 2]–second reading debate commenced [first speaker]

The following bills were passed

  • Electoral and Referendum Amendment (Maintaining Address) Bill 2011 and a related bill [The bills will now be assented to]

Notices of motion

To exempt a bill from the cut-off order [to enable consideration this period of sittings – 18 to 28 June 2012]

  • Tax Laws Amendment (Managed Investment Trust Withholding Tax) Bill 2012

Messages from the House of Representatives reported

  • Personally Controlled Electronic Health Records Bill 2011 and a related bill–agreeing to the amendments made by the Senate to the bills [the bills will now be assented to]


Scheduled public committee hearings

Committee reports 

Reports tabled

  • Education, Employment and Workplace Relations References Committee–Higher education and skills training to support agriculture and agribusiness in Australia [report] [a motion to take note of the report was debated and agreed to – first speaker]
  • Treaties Joint Committee–125th report–Treaties tabled on 7 and 28 February 2012 [report] [a motion to take note of the report was agreed to]

Government responses tabled

  • Corporations and Financial Services Joint Committee–Statutory oversight of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission
  • Gambling Reform Joint Select Committee–Interactive and online gambling and gambling advertising and Interactive Gambling and the Broadcasting Amendment (Online Transactions and Other Measures) Bill 2011
  • Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee–Iraqi wheat debt: Repayments for wheat growers

New inquiries

Selection of Bills Committee report

The Senate adopted report no. 7 of 2012 of the Selection of Bills Committee, and made the following references:

  • Government Investment Funds Amendment (Ethical Investments) Bill 2011–Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee–to report by 22 August 2012
  • Greenhouse and Energy Minimum Standards Bill 2012 and a related bill–Environment and Communications Legislation Committee–to report by 15 August 2012
  • Maritime Powers Bill 2012 and a related bill–Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee–to report by 20 August 2012

Meetings during the sitting of the Senate

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

  • Australia’s Food Processing Sector Select Committee–25 June 2012 from 4.00 pm and 27 June 2012 from 11.30 am–private meetings
  • Community Affairs Legislation and References Committees–26 June 2012 from 12.30 pm–private meetings
  • Corporations and Financial Services Joint Committee–
    • 22 June 2012 from 9.30 am–public meeting
    • 28 June 2012 from 10.00 am–private meeting
  • Economics Legislation Committee–22 June 2012 from 2.00 pm–private meeting
  • Education, Employment and Workplace Relations Legislation Committee–22 June 2012 from 9.30 am–public meeting–Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Amendment Bill 2012
  • Environment and Communications Legislation Committee–21 June 2012 from 1.00 pm–private meeting
  • Human Rights Joint Committee–21 June 2012 from 5.00 pm to 7.00 pm–public meeting
  • Public Accounts and Audit Joint Committee–15 August and 22 August 2012 from 11.00 am to 1.00 pm–private meetings, followed by private briefings

Reporting dates extended

The Senate extended reporting dates for the following inquiries:

  • Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport References Committee–
  • Management of the Murray-Darling Basin–to report by 12 September 2012
  • Foreign Investment Review Board national interest test–to report by 12 September 2012

Notice of motion to refer a matter to a committee

The Leader of the Australian Greens (Senator Milne) gave a notice of motion to refer a matter relating to electricity bill increases to the Economics References Committee–to report by 23 August 2012.


The Senate agreed to various changes to the membership of committees.


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]

Orders for the production of documents

Notice of motion

Senators Cormann and Johnston gave a notice of motion to require the Minister representing the Assistant Treasurer (Senator Wong) to table correspondence between ASIC and the Financial Ombudsman Service in relation to changes in the terms of reference for the Financial Ombudsman Service–no later than noon on 28 June 2012.

Documents tabled

  • 2 petitions and a petitioning document
  • Government documents
  • Response to a Senate resolution about Schizophrenia Awareness Week–from Minister for Mental Health and Ageing (Mr Butler) [resolution agreed to on 10 May 2012]

Ministerial statement tabled

The Minister for Finance and Deregulation (Senator Wong) tabled a ministerial statement about homelessness [a motion to take note of the statement was agreed to].

Other business

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

Adjournment debate–first speaker

Motions agreed to

Motions negatived

Motion debated

Notices of motion

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

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The Senate Daily Summary is available at

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

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