The Senate delegates a range of tasks to its committees. As committee proceedings are flexible, they are able to meet in a variety of places, receive written submissions and hear evidence on specified matters. Numerous inquiries can be held at the same time, so many different issues can be examined and reported back to the Senate.
Committees provide an opportunity for organisations and individuals to participate in policy making and to have their views placed on the public record and considered as part of the decision-making process.
The 2019-2020 Additional estimates hearings were held from Monday, 2 March to Friday, 6 March 2020.
The Senate has yet to agree on rescheduled dates for the 2020-21 Budget estimates hearings. However, the revised 2020 sitting calendar agreed to by House on 23 March has these hearings tentatively scheduled in the fortnight beginning the 19th October.