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REFERENDUM (CONSTITUTION ALTERATION) AMENDMENT BILL 1983

The Senate, according to Order, resolved itself into Committee for the further consideration of the Bill.

In the Committee

Consideration resumed of proposed new clause 28A, as amended, and of the amendment moved thereto by Senator Walters, viz: Proposed Forms 1, 2 and 3, leave out ''To enable the Commonwealth, the States and the Northern Territory more easily to obtain from the High Court its views on certain constitutional questions'' (wherever occurring), insert ''To give power to the Commonwealth, State and Northern Territory Governments to seek advice from the High Court as to the full extent of their powers under the Constitution''.

Question-That the words proposed to be left out be left out (Senator Walters' amendment)-put and negatived.

Amendment to the proposed amendment, as amended, negatived accordingly.

Senator Harradine, by leave, moved an amendment to the Attorney-General's (Senator Gareth Evans) proposed amendment, as amended, viz: Proposed Forms 1, 2 and 3, leave out ''To enable the Commonwealth, the States and the Northern Territory more easily to obtain from the High Court its views on certain constitutional questions'' (wherever occurring), insert ''To confer an advisory jurisdiction on the High Court''.

Debate ensued.

Question-That the words proposed to be left out be left out (Senator Harradine's amendment)-put and negatived.

Amendment to the proposed amendment, as amended, negatived accordingly.

Debate on the proposed amendment, as amended, continued.

Question-That proposed new clause 28A, as amended, be inserted in the Bill-put and passed.

New clause 28A agreed to accordingly.

Clause 29 agreed to.

On the motion of Senator Gareth Evans the following amendment was agreed to: Page 13, after clause 29, insert the following new clause: Operation of Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, &c., in relation to a referendum ''30. (1) The succeeding provisions of this section shall have effect after the commencement of the Commonwealth Electoral Legislation Amendment Act 1983 (in this section referred to as the 'Amending Act').

(2) For the purposes of a referendum- (a) the amendments made by the Amending Act to the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, other than the amendments made by sections 3, 4, 5, 7, 8 and 150 of the Amending Act, shall be deemed not to have been made; and

(b) the Referendum (Constitution Alteration) Act 1906, the regulations referred to in sub-section (3) and the regulations that were, immediately before the commencement of the Amending Act, in force under the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 and the Referendum (Constitution Alteration) Act 1906, shall have effect accordingly.

(3) Notwithstanding the repeals effected by section 151 of the Amending Act- (a) the Australian Capital Territory Representation Regulations that were, immediately before the commencement of the Amending Act, in force under the Australian Capital Territory Representation (House of Representatives) Act 1973; and

(b) the Northern Territory Electoral Regulations that were, immediately before the commencement of the Amending Act, in force under the Northern Territory Representation Act 1922 and the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918, shall continue in force for the purposes of a referendum.

(4) For the purposes of the application, in relation to a referendum, of any law of the Commonwealth or of a Territory, or any order or instrument under any such law, in relation to anything done or to be done after the commencement of the Amending Act- (a) a reference to the Australian Electoral Office shall be read as a reference to the Australian Electoral Commission established under the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 as amended by the Amending Act;

(b) a reference to the Chief Australian Electoral Officer or to the Chief Electoral Officer for the Commonwealth shall be read as a reference to the Electoral Commissioner appointed under that Act as so amended;

(c) a reference to a Commonwealth Electoral Officer for a State or to an Australian Electoral Officer for a State shall be read as a reference to the Australian Electoral Officer for the State appointed under that Act as so amended;

(d) a reference to a Returning Officer, in relation to a Division of the Australian Capital Territory or in relation to the Northern Territory, shall be read as a reference to the Divisional Returning Officer for that Division or that Territory, as the case may be; and

(e) a reference to a Registrar, in relation to a Subdivision, shall be read as a reference to the Divisional Returning Officer for the Division of which that Subdivision is part or, if an Assistant Divisional Returning Officer has been appointed for that Subdivision, to that Assistant Divisional Returning Officer.''.

New clause 30 agreed to accordingly.

Remainder of Bill, by leave, taken as a whole and agreed to.

Bill to be reported with amendments.

The Acting Deputy-President (Senator Coleman) resumed the Chair; and the Chairman of Committees (Senator Hamer) reported accordingly.

On the motion of Senator Gareth Evans the Report from the Committee was adopted, and the Bill read a third time.