Labor Senators' Dissenting Report
Labor Senators reject the desperate tactics of a Government determined
to distract the public from a budget that slugs working and middle class
Australians whilst delivering tax cuts for the big end of town. The tabling of
this report is a stunt from a desperate Government that dithered for two and a
It is clear that the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Media Reform)
Bill 2016 will not be considered by the Parliament before the Parliament is
The fact that Prime Minister Turnbull and Minister Fifield waited two
and a half years before proposing any reform to the regulatory structure
governing media in Australia demonstrates that this is all about politics and
not good public policy or the public interest.
Labor Senators have been given less than 48 hours to review the chair's
report, which was not due to be tabled until May 12. We will not rush
consideration of the arguments put forward by academics, media companies and
everyday Australians. We will take time to review the evidence presented before
determining our position on reforms.
Labor Senators are cognisant of the material impact that further delay
to media reform will have on regional programming.
Labor has repeatedly indicated its predisposition to support the removal
of the 75 per cent reach rule and Labor Senators wish to express our
disappointment that the government has dithered and delayed this important
The Government's inaction for two and a half years is squarely to blame
for any negative impact on regional television viewers as a consequence of the
44th Parliament having no time left to consider this bill.
Furthermore, a Shorten Labor Government will undertake a more thorough
and genuine consultation process with all interested stakeholders.
Labor Senators look forward to engaging in a genuine conversation about
the future of our media industry in the early stages of the 45th Parliament.
Senator Anne Urquhart Senator Jenny
Deputy Chair Senator
for New South Wales
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