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Thursday, 3 November 2011
Page: 12743


Mrs BRONWYN BISHOP (Mackellar) (13:43): Mr Speaker, I seek your indulgence and your guidance on what could be a matter of privilege. Yesterday in the House, the Assistant Treasurer stated that the age limit is to be abolished on superannuation contributions under the bill that he introduced, entitled the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Amendment Bill 2011. The minister said in his tabling speech:

And this bill abolishes the superannuation guarantee age limit.

It clearly does not. The bill introduced by the minister merely amends section 27(1)(a) of the Superannuation Guarantee (Administration) Act 1992 to lift the age discrimination from 70 to 75. It does not abolish the subsection, which is what my private member's bill sought to do when I introduced it earlier.

In question time yesterday, the minister further reinforced this position when he said:

… we will scrap the age discrimination levels for everyone who goes to work.

…   …   …

So the 18,000 Australians in the workforce who are over the age of 75 will be able to get superannuation.

They will not be able to get that superannuation and that is a false statement. Mr Speaker, would you ask the minister to come back into the House and correct the record, particularly with regard to the tabling speech which, as you know, is a document which courts may consider. If not, would you consider whether there is a prima facie case for referring this matter to the privileges committee for their consideration.

The SPEAKER: I will take on board the matters raised by the member for Mackellar, and I have a distinct feeling that I will be reporting more on the latter than the former.

It being 1:45 pm the debate is interrupted in accordance with standing order 143. The debate may be resumed at a later hour.