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Tuesday, 14 May 2013
Page: 2444


Senator LUNDY (Australian Capital TerritoryMinister Assisting for Industry and Innovation, Minister for Multicultural Affairs and Minister for Sport) (15:02): The department took 507 questions on notice from the additional estimates hearings held in February 2013. The department also took 647 questions on notice from the supplementary estimates hearings back in October 2012. The department has not met the deadline for receipt of answers to the Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee as many of the questions sought detailed information on a number of complex and sensitive issues.

Over the past seven hearings since the supplementary estimates hearings in October 2010 there has been a significant increase in the number of questions on notice. I will give you some examples: 647 questions were taken on notice at the supplementary estimates hearings in October 2012; 510 questions were taken on notice at the budget estimates hearings in May 2012; 519 questions were taken on notice at the additional estimates hearings back in February 2012; 423 questions were taken on notice at the supplementary estimates hearings prior to that in October 2011; 794 questions were taken on notice at the budget estimates hearings in May 2011; 357 questions were taken on notice at the additional budget estimates hearings in February 2011; and 445 questions were taken on notice at the supplementary estimates hearings back in October 2010. This compares with only 136 questions on notice being asked at the budget estimates hearing back in May 2010. I hope these numbers give an indication of the weight of work that has been given to the department. They are doing their utmost to respond to those questions.