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Thursday, 14 May 1998
Page: 2869


Senator IAN CAMPBELL (3:35 PM) —I move:

(1) The Senate not sit on Monday, 1 June 1998.

(2) The Senate sit on Friday, 29 May 1998 and that:

(a) The hours of meeting shall be 9.30 a.m. to 4.25 p.m.;

(b) The routine of business shall be government business only; and

(c) The question for the adjournment of the Senate shall be proposed at 3.45 p.m.

I have been able to discuss this proposal with all parties and independents, with the exception of Senator Colston. Unfortunately, I have not been able to speak to him this afternoon. I have communicated with his office in writing. It has been necessary to achieve two things. The 1 June sitting would have seen a lot of senators travel to Canberra even though they were not needed to come to estimates. That would have involved expense which is unnecessary. To make up some hours which are desperately needed to deal with an extremely heavy legislative program, I am thankful that the opposition parties and other senators have agreed to the extra Friday.

The other thing that should be indicated, and it has been discussed between the opposition whip and me is that, as has been previous practice, rather than specifying a luncheon period the government undertakes that at an appropriate time at the end of a bill or at the end of a second reading stage we will seek to have a short adjournment for lunch to allow staff and any senators who are involved in the chamber all day to have a break in the region between midday and 2 o'clock, depending on whatever is convenient for senators and staff on the day. We will do that on that day.

Question resolved in the affirmative.