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Contents

 

 
 
 

Amendment to an order of continuing effect

1  Departmental and agency contracts—Order for production of documents

That paragraph (7) of the order be amended to read as follows:

(7) The Finance and Public Administration Committee consider the ongoing operation of the order and report on relevant developments from time to time.

( Agreed to 1 March 2007 upon adoption of recommendation 13 in the Finance and Public Administration Committee’s second report on the operation of the Senate order for the production of lists of departmental and agency contracts (2003-06) .)

 

Committees

2  Amendment of committee names; Allocation of departments

(1)  That standing order 25(1) be amended as follows:

Omit: ‘Employment, Workplace Relations and Education’

Substitute: ‘Education, Employment and Workplace Relations’

Omit: ‘Environment, Communications, Information Technology and the Arts’

Substitute: ‘Environment, Communications and the Arts’.

(2) That departments and agencies be allocated to legislative and general purpose standing committees as follows:

Community Affairs

Families, Housing, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs

Health and Ageing

Economics

Treasury

Innovation, Industry, Science and Research

Resources, Energy and Tourism

Education, Employment and Workplace Relations

Education, Employment and Workplace Relations

Environment, Communications and the Arts

Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts

Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy

Finance and Public Administration

Parliament

Prime Minis ter and Cabinet (including Climate Change)

Finance and Deregulation

Human Services

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade

Foreign Affairs and Trade

Defence (including Veterans’ Affairs)

Legal and Constitutional Affairs

Attorney-General

Immigrat ion and Citizenship

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport

Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government

Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

( Agreed to 13 February 2008 .)

3  Privileges—Standing Committee—Adoption of 94th report recommendation

That the Senate authorise the President, if required, to engage counsel as amicus curiae if either the action for defamation against Mr David Armstrong or a similar action against Mr William O’Chee is set down for trial.

( Agreed to 4 September 2000 .)

 

 4  Unauthorised disclosure of committee proceedings

That the following order operate as an order of continuing effect:

(1) The Senate confirms that any disclosure of evidence or documents submitted to a committee, of documents prepared by a committee, or of deliberations of a committee, without the approval of the committee or of the Senate, may be treated by the Senate as a contempt.

(2) The Senate reaffirms its resolution of 20 June 1996, relating to procedures to be followed by committees in cases of unauthorised disclosure of committee proceedings.

(3) The Senate provides the following guidelines to be observed by committees in applying that resolution, and declares that the Senate will observe the guidelines in determining whether to refer a matter to the Committee of Privileges:

1. Unless there are particular circumstances involving actual or potential substantial interference with the work of a committee or of the Senate, the following kinds of unauthorised disclosure should not be raised as matters of privilege:

(a) disclosure of a committee report in the time between the substantial conclusion of the committee's deliberations on the report and its presentation to the Senate;

(b) disclosure of other documents prepared by a committee and not published by the committee, where the committee would have published them, or could appropriately have published them, in any event, or where they contain only research or publicly-available material, or where their disclosure is otherwise inconsequential;

(c) disclosure of documents and evidence submitted to a committee and not published by the committee, where the committee would have published them, or could appropriately have published them, in any event;

(d) disclosure of private deliberations of a committee where the freedom of the committee to deliberate is unlikely to be significantly affected.

2. The following kinds of unauthorised disclosure are those for which the contempt jurisdiction of the Senate should primarily be reserved, and which should therefore be raised as matters of privilege:

(a) disclosure of documents or evidence submitted to a committee where the committee has deliberately decided to treat the documents or evidence as in camera material, for the protection of witnesses or others, or because disclosure would otherwise be harmful to the public interest;

(b) disclosure of documents prepared by a committee where that involves disclosure of material of the kind specified in paragraph (a);

(c) disclosure of private deliberations of a committee where that involves disclosure of that kind of material, or significantly impedes the committee's freedom to deliberate.

3. An unauthorised disclosure not falling into the categories in guidelines 1 and 2 should not be raised as a matter of privilege unless it involves actual or potential substantial interference with the work of a committee or of the Senate.

 

 4. When considering any unauthorised disclosure of material in the possession of a committee, the committee should consider whether there was any substantive reason for not publishing that material.

(4) Before deciding to raise a matter of privilege involving possible unauthorised disclosure of committee proceedings, any committee may seek the guidance of the Committee of Privileges as to whether a matter should be pursued. If the committee decides that such a matter should be raised, it must consult with the Committee of Privileges before taking the matter further.

(5) When applying this resolution a committee shall have regard to the matters set out in paragraphs 3.43 to 3.59 of the 122nd Report of the Committee of Privileges, June 2005.

( Sessional order agreed to on 6 October 2005 adopted as an order of continuing effect on 17 September 2007 .)

5  Substitute members of committees—Temporary order

That the following operate as a temporary order until the conclusion of the 2008 sittings:

If a member of a committee appointed under standing order 25 is unable to attend a meeting of the committee, that member may in writing to the chair of the committee appoint a participating member to act as a substitute member of the committee at that meeting. If the member is incapacitated or unavailable, a letter to the chair of a committee appointing a participating member to act as a substitute member of the committee may be signed on behalf of the member by the leader of the party or group on whose nomination the member was appointed to the committee.

( Agreed to 13 February 2008 as part of a longer order—see also ‘Meeting of the Senate’ below .)

Estimates

6  2007-08 Additional estimates—2008-09 Budget estimates—Hearings

(1) That estimates hearings by standing committees for 2008 be scheduled as follows:

2007-08 additional estimates:

Monday, 18 February and Tuesday, 19 February and, if required, Friday, 22 February ( Group A )

Wednesday, 20 February and Thursday, 21 February and, if required, Friday, 22 February ( Group B ).

2008-09 Budget estimates:

Monday, 26 May to Thursday, 29 May and, if required, Friday, 30 May ( Group A )

Monday, 2 June to Thursday, 5 June and, if required, Friday, 6 June ( Group B )

Monday, 20 October and Tuesday, 21 October, and if required, 24 October ( supplementary hearings—Group A )

Wednesday, 22 October and Wednesday, 23 October and, if required, 24 October ( supplementary hearings—Group B ).

 

 (2) That the committees consider the proposed expenditure in accordance with the allocation of departments and agencies to committees agreed to by the Senate.

(3) That committees meet in the following groups:

Group A:

Environment, Communications and the Arts

Finance and Public Administration

Legal and Constitutional Affairs

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport

Group B:

Community Affairs

Economics

Education, Employment and Workpla ce Relations

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade.

(4) That the committees report to the Senate on the following dates:

(a) Tuesday, 18 March 2008 in respect of the 2007-08 additional estimates; and

(b) Tuesday, 24 June 2008 in respect of the 2008-09 Budget estimates .

( Agreed to 13 February 2008 .)

*7  2007-08 Additional estimates—Answers to questions

The dates set by standing committees for answering questions taken on notice during the 2007-08 additional estimates are as follows:

Group A:

Environment, Communications, and the Arts Thursday, 10 April 2008

Finance and Public Administration Friday, 4 April 2008

Legal and Constitutional Affairs Wednesday, 2 April 2008

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Wednesday, 9 April 2008

Group B:

Community Affairs Friday, 11 April 2008

Economics Friday, 11 April 2008

Education, Employment and Workplace

Relations Friday, 11 April 2008

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Thursday, 10 April 2008.

Standing order 74(5) takes effect 30 days after these dates.

Meeting of Senate

8  Meeting of Senate

That the days of meeting of the Senate for 2008 be as follows:

Autumn sittings:

Tuesday, 12 February to Thursday, 14 February

Autumn sittings (2):

Tuesday, 11 March to Thursday, 13 March

Monday, 17 M arch to Thursday, 20 March

Budget sittings:

Tuesday, 13 May to Thursday, 15 May

 

  Winter sittings:

Monday, 16 June to Thursday, 19 June

Monday, 23 June to Thursday, 26 June

Spring sittings:

Tuesday, 26 August to Thursday, 28 August

Monday, 1 September to Thursday, 4 September

Monday, 15 September to Thursday, 18 September

Monday, 22 September to Thursday, 25 September

Monday, 13 October to Thursday, 16 October

Spring sittings (2):

Monday, 10 November to Thursday, 13 November

Monda y, 24 November to Thursday, 27 November

Monday, 1 December to Thursday, 4 December.

( Agreed to 13 February 2008 .)

9  Adjournment debate on Tuesday—Temporary order

That the following operate as a temporary order until the conclusion of the 2008 sittings:

On the question for the adjournment of the Senate on Tuesday, a senator who has spoken once subject to the time limit of 10 minutes may speak again for not more than 10 minutes if no other senator who has not already spoken once wishes to speak, provided that a senator may by leave speak for not more than 20 minutes on one occasion.

( Agreed to 13 February 2008 as part of a longer order—see also ‘Committees’ above .)

10  Divisions on Thursday—Temporary order

That the following operate as a temporary order until the conclusion of the 2008 sittings:

If a division is called for on Thursday after 4.30 pm, the matter before the Senate shall be adjourned until the next day of sitting at a time fixed by the Senate.

( Agreed to 13 February 2008 as part of a longer order—see also ‘Committees’ above .)

Orders for production of documents

11  Family and Community Services—Housing Assistance agreements—Order for production of documents

(1) That the Senate:

(a) notes that the Housing Assistance (Form of Agreement) Determination 2003 in Schedule 1, subsections 4(33) to 4(36) requires states to report on expenditure and progress towards their respective bilateral agreements to the Commonwealth within 6 months after the end of each grant year;

(b) orders that there be laid on the table, no later than 3.30 pm on 12 May 2005, all reports provided by the states and territories to the Commonwealth under those provisions for the financial year 2003-04; and

 

 (c) orders that all reports provided by the states and territories to the Commonwealth under those provisions be tabled in the Senate within 5 sittings days, or one calendar month, after receipt (whichever is the later), and that the Senate be notified in writing by the Minister for Family and Community Services within 5 sitting days of the expiration of the 6 months if reports have not been provided within the required 6 months.

(2) That this order is of continuing effect.

( Motion of Senator Bartlett agreed to 12 May 2005 .)