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Wednesday, 24 August 1994
Page: 188


Senator TEAGUE (11.33 a.m.) —We have heard Senator Bourne's speech on this matter and we have heard Senator Coates speaking on the package as a whole. The purpose of Senator Hill's amendment is to ensure that there is not abuse. Senator Hill's moving this on behalf of the opposition has led to this useful debate whereby it is acknowledged on all sides that we do not want to see that kind of abuse. It appears that the numbers are against the amendment, so let us test that. If there is abuse, then let us all move to pick up the amendment that Senator Hill has moved.

  Regardless of this amendment having the numbers and these words being deleted—that is, this particular privilege for a participating member to have an opinion included in the printed report—we should note that there are two avenues already available to such senators. The first one is to be a substitute member on the committee. Because government, opposition, independent and other senators are to be represented on all committees, it is possible for a senator who particularly wants to participate in the work of that committee to seek to be the substitute for one of that senator's colleagues. The second avenue is one that is available to all of us in that when the report is tabled we can give our speeches. We have seen a useful debate on this amendment and we know that there is a remedy to hand if there is any abuse of the kind that we all want to avoid.