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Thursday, 19 February 1987
Page: 333


Mr HURFORD (Minister for Community Services and Minister Assisting the Treasurer)(12.09) —I move:

That, in accordance with sub section 49 (2) of the Audit Act 1901, the House approves the variation to the form of the Statement of Financial Transactions of the Commonwealth presented to the House on 26 November 1986.

I believe the House is entitled to some explanation about this. It relates to changes in the form and content of the monthly financial transactions statement, to bring it more closely into line with the Budget documents and to seek clearance of the wording of an explanatory statement to parliament, which accompanied the tabling in the amended form. Before I was able to get in touch with the honourable member for Mackellar (Mr Carlton), his office kindly got in touch with mine, and I trust that he was fully apprised of this matter.

The form was incorporated into the Audit Act 1901 in 1979 and it was based on the then Budget presentations of outlays and receipts. In May 1985 the Treasurer (Mr Keating) approved for tabling in parliament a proposed amended format of the statement of Commonwealth financial transactions, to bring the statement into line with the 1985-86 Budget documents. The amended format was subsequently approved by parliament during the autumn session of 1985. The amendments now sought are necessary in order to bring the format of the Commonwealth financial transactions statement into line with the 1986-87 Budget documents. As I have indicated, a fuller explanatory statement on this matter was tabled in the House on 26 November 1986. I commend to the House the motion relating to what is a very technical matter.