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LEGAL AND CONSTITUTIONAL AFFAIRS REFERENCES COMMITTEE—REFERENCE

The Leader of The Nationals in the Senate (Senator Joyce), pursuant to notice of motion not objected to as a formal motion, moved business of the Senate notice of motion no. 6—

 (1) That the following matter be referred to the Legal and Constitutional Affairs References Committee for inquiry and report by 11 May 2011:

  The provisions of the Water Act 2007 (the Act), with particular reference to the direction it provides for the development of a Basin Plan, including:

  (a) any ambiguities or constraints in the Act which would prevent a Basin Plan from being developed on an equally weighted consideration of economic, social and environmental factors;

  (b) the differences in legal interpretations of the Act;

  (c) the constitutional power of the Commonwealth to legislate in the area of water;

  (d) the role of relevant international agreements and the effect of those on the parts of the Act which direct the Basin Plan to give effect to those agreements and their effect on the Act more generally;

  (e) any amendments that would be required to ensure that economic, social and environmental factors are given equally weighted consideration in developing the Basin Plan; and

  (f) any other related matter.

 (2) That, in conducting its inquiry, the committee should consult those with particular legal expertise in the area of water.

Question put.

The Senate divided—

AYES, 36

Senators—

Adams

Back

Barnett

Bernardi

Boswell

Boyce

Brandis

Bushby

Cash

Colbeck

Coonan

Cormann

Eggleston

Ferguson

Fielding

Fierravanti-Wells

Fifield

Fisher

Heffernan

Johnston

Joyce

Kroger

Macdonald

Mason

McGauran

Minchin

Nash

Parry (Teller)

Payne

Ronaldson

Ryan

Scullion

Troeth

Trood

Williams

Xenophon

NOES, 34

Senators—

Arbib

Bilyk

Bishop

Brown, Bob

Brown, Carol

Cameron

Collins

Conroy

Crossin

Farrell

Faulkner

Feeney

Forshaw

Furner

Hanson-Young

Hogg

Hurley

Hutchins

Ludlam

Ludwig

Lundy

Marshall

McEwen (Teller)

McLucas

Milne

Moore

O'Brien

Polley

Pratt

Sherry

Siewert

Stephens

Sterle

Wortley

Question agreed to.