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Monday, 4 December 2017
Page: 9513

Presentation

Senator Patrick to move on 6 December 2017:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

   (i) the Australian Information Commissioner Act 2010 (AIC Act) establishes three independent statutory office holders:

(A) the Information Commissioner,

(B) the Freedom of Information (FOI) Commissioner, and

(C) the Privacy Commissioner,

   (ii) paragraphs 11(5)(a) and (b), and paragraphs 12(5)(a) and (b) of the AIC Act describe the independence of each commissioner,

   (iii) in the six months following the AIC Act's Royal Assent, three commissioners were appointed to the three office-holder's positions,

   (iv) since the unsuccessful attempt by the Abbott Government to abolish the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner, two commissioners have left office and have not been replaced,

   (v) currently Mr Timothy Pilgrim fills the statutory positions of the Information Commissioner and Privacy Commissioner, and the position of FOI Commissioner is vacant on account of Mr Pilgrim not holding the legal qualifications required in section 14 of the AIC Act,

   (vi) on 23 March 2017, then Senator Xenophon wrote to the Attorney¬≠-General calling on him to immediately arrange for the appointment of both an FOI Commissioner and a Privacy Commissioner in accordance with the Act,

   (vii) on 4 May 2017, the Attorney-General responded stating that it is the Government's intention to leave Mr Pilgrim as the Information Commissioner and the Privacy Commissioner and it proposed to leave the position of FOI Commissioner vacant,

   (viii) on 29 November 2017 the Senate passed a motion calling on the Government to immediately commence the process of appointing an independent Privacy Commissioner and an independent FOI Commissioner in accordance with the AIC Act - the Government did not support the motion,

   (ix) pursuant to an Administrative Arrangement Order of the Governor-General, the AIC Act is administered by the Attorney-General, and

   (x) the AIC Act requires the appointment of three independent statutory office-holders and the Government is constitutionally bound to maintain and execute the laws of the land; and

(b) resolves that, until such time as the position of the Privacy Commissioner and the position of the FOI Commissioner have been gazetted, the Attorney-General shall be prohibited from sitting at the table of the Senate and shall be allocated a seat by the President in the front seats reserved for ministers. (general business notice of motion no. 634)

Senator Bernardi to move on 6 December 2017:

That the Senate—

(a) commends the Prime Minister and the Government for talking about the need for income tax relief for middle-income earners affected by bracket creep; and

(b) encourages the Government to propose relief for bracket creep - either in the Mid-Year Budget Review or in the 2017/18 Budget - and bring a bill to that effect to the Parliament at the earliest opportunity. (general business notice of motion no. 635)

Senator Bernardi to move on the next day of sitting:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that 3 December 2017 marked 163 years since the Eureka Stockade rebellion of 1854;

(b) recognises the Eureka Stockade as the birthplace of the Australian spirit of mateship, signified by the term 'diggers', a term which was later adopted by Anzac soldiers in World War I;

(c) further notes that the Eureka Stockade signified a victory of self­-reliant individuals over big government, corruption, arbitrary licensing and excessive taxation;

(d) rejects the attempt by some unions to rewrite history and usurp the Southern Cross or Eureka flag and rebellion as representative of militant unionism; and

(e) calls upon the Government to promote the historical observance of the Eureka Stockade and ensure an accurate representation of its true historical context. (general business notice of motion no. 636)

Senator Bernardi to move on the next day of sitting:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that 2 December 2017 marked one year since the South Australian Treasurer, the Honourable Tom Koutsantonis, MP, called for the abolition of tariffs 'such as the luxury car tax' on imported motor vehicles, and also stated that he would immediately take that cause to the Coalition of Australian Governments meeting in Canberra;

(b) agrees with the South Australian Treasurer's statement in his media release on that day that there is no longer an Australian automotive manufacturing industry to protect with these measures;

(c) observes that abolition of remaining tariffs on motor vehicles and the luxury car tax would, combined, save Australian car buyers $1 billion per annum; and

(d) calls upon the Government to announce its plans for these tariffs in the Mid-Year Budget Review, if not before. (general business notice of motion no.637)

Senator Siewert to move on the next day of sitting:

That the Senate—

(a) notes the article in The Age, on 15 November 2017, regarding the residents of Berkeley Living retirement village in Victoria;

(b) acknowledges that there have been problems with the retirement villages sector for many years and that there was a parliamentary inquiry that looked at issues within the retirement villages sector in 2007;

(c) recognises that the situation of Berkeley Living residents is yet another example of how a lack of regulation and standards in this industry have allowed poor practices to flourish;

(d) notes that retirement villages were on the agenda for the meeting, on 31 August 2017, of Consumer Affairs Ministers and that it was agreed to direct the Chartered Accountants of Australia & New Zealand to undertake further investigation into the regulation of retirement villages, including identifying any regulatory gaps that allow unfair practices to occur; and

(e) urges the Federal Government to take a leadership role in developing nationally-consistent regulation of retirement housing across the various tenures that provides strong protections to residents and their families. (general business notice of motion no. 638)

Senator Bernardi to move on 7 December 2017:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that the Trump administration has succeeded in passing, through both Houses of the Congress of the United States of America (US), over US$1 trillion in company tax cuts over 10 years, including a cut in the corporate tax rate from 35% to potentially 20%;

(b) expresses concern that these US company tax cuts will affect Australian companies' global competitiveness;

(c) also notes the Australian Department of Treasury research, published earlier this month, revealing that if Australia's corporate tax rate was cut from 30 %to 25% by 2026, there would be $30 billion in additional company tax revenue due to stronger economic growth, and increased GST revenue from additional consumer spending;

(d) further notes the recent comments of the Business Council of Australia and the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry supporting Australian company tax cuts; and

(e) supports tax relief for Australian companies to ensure our companies remain globally competitive. (general business notice of motion no. 639)

Senator Steele-John to move on the next day of sitting:

(1) That the Senate notes:

   (a) the unanimous findings of the Environment and Communications References Committee report, Game on: more than playing around - The future of Australia's video game development industry, received on 29 April 2016,

   (b) the absence of any government response to the findings of this inquiry, and

   (c) that, on 25 May 2017, the Minister for Communications (Senator Fifield) and the Deputy Secretary of the Department of Communications and the Arts (Mr Richard Eccles) stated at the Budget estimates hearing, in response to questioning by Senator Ludlam, that a finalised draft response to this inquiry has been submitted to the Government for consideration; and

(2) That there be laid on the table by the Minister for Communications, by no later than 3 pm on 6 December 2017, a copy of the government response to this report. (general business notice of motion no. 640)

Senator Hanson-Young to move on the next day of sitting:

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

   (i) before his resignation, the Honourable Barnaby Joyce was the Turnbull Government's Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, and

   (ii) the Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources has authority over the function of the Murray-Darling Basin Plan;

(b) further notes that, in his time as the Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, former Minister Joyce:

   (i) dismissed the suggestion that the Commonwealth investigate allegations of water theft as broadcast by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Four Corners program,

   (ii) instead described those allegations as a conspiracy to 'take more water' from irrigators in an effort to 'shut more of your towns down',

   (iii) suggested that allegations that irrigators in New South Wales have undermined the Murray-Darling Basin Plan were an issue for New South Wales only, as 'the people who live around where that water may have been taken live all in New South Wales',

   (iv) indicated that the reason he held the responsibility for the water portfolio was to 'make sure we don't have greenies running the show',

   (v) stated that the decision to incorporate the water portfolio into the broader agriculture portfolio was to 'look after' irrigator communities in New South Wales, and

   (vi) suggested that the allegations were broadcast by Four Corners out of sympathy for 'radical greens organisations';

(c) acknowledges that the Australian taxpayer has bought billions of litres of water back under the Murray-Darling Basin Plan, giving all Australians, in every state and territory, an interest in ensuring this water is used for its stated purpose;

(d) recognises that bestowing on a single minister responsibility for both agriculture and water creates a conflict of interest; and

(e) calls on the Government to split the portfolios of water and agriculture and to not return the responsibility for water to former Minister Joyce. (general business notice of motion no. 641)

Senator Hanson-Young to move on the next day of sitting:

(1) That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

   (i) in December 2016, the celebrity gardener Mr Don Burke appeared in a Facebook video with the then Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources and Deputy Prime Minister (Mr Barnaby Joyce), discussing favourably the relocation of the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority from Canberra to the Minister's electorate, and

   (ii) this video is no longer available;

(b) further notes that:

   (i) allegations of long-term sexual harassment and abuse against prominent identities raise serious concerns about the culture of silence that has been allowed to prosper in the media industry,

   (ii) the decision of any Government minister to associate with media identities facing multiple allegations of sexual harassment and abuse would call into question their capacity to responsibly execute their ministerial responsibilities,

   (iii) scrubbing one's social media of references to figures facing allegations of sexual harassment and abuse would represent an acknowledgement that the association was inappropriate in the first place, and

   (iv) any member of the Government who chooses to associate with a figure whose alleged behaviour was, to quote one report, 'an open secret for years', cannot, for their own benefit, pick and choose when to withdraw that association; and

(2) That there be laid on the table by the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, by no later than 6.30 pm on 7 December 2017:

   (a) any documents produced by, with, or featuring celebrity gardener Mr Burke from 1 November 2016,

   (b) any advice provided to the Minister by the Department relating to social media featuring Mr Burke since 1 November 2016 and prior to 4 December 2017,

   (c) any documents relating to social media featuring the Minister and Mr Burke since 1 November 2016 and prior to 4 December 2017, and

   (d) any related documents. (general business notice of motion no. 642)

Senator Patrick to move on the next day of sitting:

(1) That the Senate notes that:

   (a) in 2015, the Government commenced consultation with the local community of Kimba in South Australia on whether the town might host a radioactive waste management facility, in order to ascertain if there was 'broad community support';

   (b) in an early 2016 vote on the issue, the community was shown to be split down the middle - 51% in favour to 49% against;

   (c) a late 2016 vote was then held, where the numbers changed slightly to 56% in favour to 41% against,

   (d) on 22 March 2017, the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, responding to a question from then Senator Xenophon on the meaning of 'broad community support', advised the Senate that the Government had taken a proposal forward in the Hawker region in South Australia where support was at 65%;

   (e) the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia further advised that, while the Government has not put a definitive figure on what constitutes 'broad community support', the Government would need a figure in the range of the support received in Hawker;

   (f) Kimba voted a third time in July this year, with a total of 88 per cent of the community voting - the results have come in at 57% for and 43% against;

   (g) at no stage has the 65% 'broad community support' criteria the Government set itself been reached; and

   (h) on 27 June 2017, the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia announced that two proposed sites for a radioactive waste management facility at Kimba will proceed to the next phase of assessment.

(2) That there be laid on the table by the Minister for Resources and Northern Australia, by no later than 3.30 pm on 7 December 2017, the brief provided to the Minister and used by him to make the decision that two proposed sites for a radioactive waste management facility at Kimba will proceed to the next phase of assessment. (general business notice of motion no.643)

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on the Senate on any day concluding its consideration of any item of business and prior to the Senate proceeding to the consideration of another item of business):

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the senator moving a motion relating to the conduct of the business of the Senate or to provide for the consideration of any matter.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on any senator objecting to a motion being taken as formal):

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the motion being moved immediately and determined without amendment or debate.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on a minister moving a motion that a bill be considered an urgent bill):

That so much of standing order 142 be suspended as would prevent debate taking place on the motion.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on a minister moving a motion to specify time to be allotted to the consideration of a bill, or any stage of a bill):

That so much of standing order 142 be suspended as would prevent the motion being debated without limitation of time and each senator speaking for the time allotted by standing orders.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on the chair declaring that the time allotted for the consideration of a bill, or any stage of a bill, has expired):

That so much of standing order 142 be suspended as would prevent further consideration of the bill, or the stage of the bill, without limitation of time or for a specified period.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on the moving of a motion to debate a matter of urgency under standing order 75):

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the senator moving an amendment to the motion.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on the Senate on any day concluding its consideration of any item of business and prior to the Senate proceeding to the consideration of another item of business):

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the senator moving a motion relating to the order of business on the Notice Paper.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on a minister at question time on any day asking that further questions be placed on notice):

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the senator moving a motion that, at question time on any day, questions may be put to ministers until 30 questions, including supplementary questions, have been asked and answered.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on any senator being refused leave to make a statement to the Senate):

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent that senator making that statement.

Senator Patrick to move (contingent on any senator being refused leave to table a document in the Senate):

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent the senator moving that the document be tabled.