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Constitution Alteration (Electors' Initiative, Fixed Term Parliaments and Qualification of Members) 2000 [2008]
Schedule 2 Amendment of the Constitution relating to the duration of the House of Representatives, the terms of service of senators, the holding of elections for the Senate and House of Representatives and the office of Prime Minister

 

1  First paragraph of section 5

Omit “, and may in like manner dissolve the House of Representatives”.

2  After section 5

Insert:

5A  Dissolution of House of Representatives

             (1)  If the House of Representatives, in pursuance of a motion of which not less than twenty-four hours’ notice has been given in accordance with the rules and orders of the House made in pursuance of section 50 of this Constitution, passes a resolution (in this section referred to as a “resolution of no confidence”) expressing a lack of confidence in the Prime Minister and the other Ministers of State for the Commonwealth, the Governor-General shall, subject to subsections (2) and (3), by Proclamation or otherwise, dissolve the House on the eighth day after the day on which the resolution of no confidence is passed unless the House has sooner expired.

             (2)  The Governor-General shall not dissolve the House of Representatives in pursuance of subsection (1) if, after the passing of the resolution of no confidence and before the eighth day after the day on which that resolution is passed, the House passes a further resolution declaring that, if a person named in the resolution were to be appointed by the Governor-General as Prime Minister, that person and the other Ministers of State for the Commonwealth who might be appointed on the advice of that person would have the confidence of the House, and that person agrees to be appointed as Prime Minister.

             (3)  The Governor-General shall not dissolve the House of Representatives in pursuance of subsection (1) if:

                     (a)  after the passing of the resolution of no confidence and before the passing of such a further resolution as is mentioned in subsection (2), the Prime Minister resigns and a person is appointed as Prime Minister by the Governor-General; and

                     (b)  after the appointment of the Prime Minister and before the eighth day after the day on which the resolution of no confidence is passed the House passes a further resolution declaring that the Prime Minister and the Ministers of State for the Commonwealth appointed on the advice of the Prime Minister have the confidence of the House.

             (4)  The Governor-General is not empowered to dissolve the House of Representatives except in accordance with this section or section 57 of this Constitution.

Calling together of House of Representatives

             (5)  Where a meeting of the House of Representatives is not fixed to take place within 7 days after the day on which a resolution of no confidence is passed, the House shall be called together to meet within 7 days after that day.

3  First and second paragraphs of section 7

Repeal the paragraphs, substitute:

                   The Senate shall be composed of senators for each State, directly chosen by the people of the State, voting as one electorate.

4  Fourth paragraph of section 7

Omit “senators shall be chosen for a term of six years, and the”.

5  At the end of the first sentence in section 9

Add “and shall provide for proportional representation”.

6  Second paragraph of section 9

Omit “The Parliament”, substitute “Subject to this Constitution, the Parliament”.

7  Sections 12 and 13

Repeal the sections, substitute:

12   Issue of writs

                   Subject to sections 13, 15 and 57 of this Constitution, the Governor of a State shall cause writs to be issued for elections of senators for the State not earlier than 30 days before the day on which the places to be filled are expected to become vacant or, if the places to be filled have become vacant, not later than 10 days after the day on which the places to be filled become vacant.

13   Terms of service of senators

             (1)  Subject to this Constitution, the term of service of a senator for a State who has been chosen otherwise than at the election next following a dissolution of the Senate and the House of Representatives begins on the day of his or her election or the day on which the place that he or she was chosen to hold becomes vacant, whichever is the later, and expires:

                     (a)  at the expiration of the last Thursday in the October fourth occurring after the day on which that term of service began; or

                     (b)  if there is an earlier dissolution of the Senate, upon that dissolution.

             (2)  The term of service of a senator for a State who has been chosen at the election next following a dissolution of the Senate and the House of Representatives begins on the day of his or her election and expires:

                     (a)  at the time at which the House of Representatives would have expired if it had not been dissolved; or

                     (b)  if there is an earlier dissolution of the Senate, upon that dissolution.

             (3)  Where a House of Representatives expires, an election of senators shall be held on the same day as the general election of members of the next House of Representatives.

             (4)  Where a House of Representatives is dissolved in pursuance of section 5A of this Constitution not more than 3 months before the day on which that House would have expired if it had not been dissolved, an election of senators to fill the places of senators whose terms expire on that day shall be held on the same day as the general election of members of the House of Representatives next following the dissolution.

             (5)  The term of service of a senator for a State (other than a senator appointed by the Governor of the State) who is holding office at the commencement of Schedule 2 of the Constitution Alteration (Electors’ Initiative, Fixed Term Parliaments and Qualifications of Members) 2000 shall expire at the time at which the House of Representatives that is in existence at that commencement would, if not sooner dissolved, expire or, if there is an earlier dissolution of the Senate, upon that dissolution.

             (6)  If:

                     (a)  a senator for a State holding office at the commencement of Schedule 2 of the Constitution Alteration (Electors’ Initiative, Fixed Term Parliaments and Qualifications of Members) 2000 was appointed by the Governor of a State in consequence of the place of a senator chosen by the people of a State having become vacant; or

                     (b)  the place of a senator chosen by the people of a State was vacant at that commencement and had become so vacant in circumstances in which section 15 of this Constitution applies;

the term of service of the senator whose place so became vacant shall, for the purposes of section 15 of this Constitution, be deemed to be, and to have been, the period for which that senator would have held his place, in accordance with subsection (5) of this section, if his place had not become vacant.

8  Section 28

Repeal the section, substitute:

28   Duration of House of Representatives

             (1)  A House of Representatives shall, unless sooner dissolved, continue from the first meeting of that House until the expiration of:

                     (a)  if the last preceding House expired, the last Thursday in the October fourth occurring after the day of the expiry of that last preceding House;

                     (b)  if the last preceding House was dissolved more than 3 months before the day on which it would have expired if it had not been dissolved, the day on which that last preceding House would have expired if it had not been dissolved; or

                     (c)  if the last preceding House was dissolved not more than 3 months before the day on which it would have expired if it had not been dissolved, the last Thursday in the October fourth occurring after the day on which that last preceding House would have expired if it had not been dissolved.

             (2)  After the expiry of a House of Representatives, a general election of members of the House shall be held on the third Saturday in the November immediately following the October in which the expiry occurred.

             (3)  Subsection (1) of this section does not apply in relation to the House of Representatives that is in existence at the commencement of the Schedule 2 of the Constitution Alteration (Electors’ Initiative, Fixed Term Parliaments and Qualifications of Members) 2000 but that House shall continue until the expiration of the last Thursday in the October fourth occurring after the day of the first meeting of that House or, if there is an earlier dissolution of that House, until that dissolution.

9  Section 32

Repeal the section, substitute:

32   Issue of writs for general elections

                   The Governor-General in Council shall cause writs to be issued for general elections of members of the House of Representatives not earlier than 30 days before the expected expiry of a House of Representatives or, if a House of Representatives has expired or been dissolved, not later than 10 days after the expiry or dissolution.

10  At the end of section 57

Add “Where the Senate and the House of Representatives are dissolved simultaneously in pursuance of this section, an election of senators shall be held on the same day as the general election of members of the House of Representatives next following the dissolution.”.

11  After the second p aragraph of section 64

Insert:

                   The Governor-General shall appoint one of the Ministers of State to be the Prime Minister. If:

                     (a)  the House of Representatives, in accordance with section 5A of this Constitution, passes a resolution expressing a lack of confidence in the Prime Minister and the other Ministers of State for the Commonwealth and also passes a further resolution declaring that, if a person named in the further resolution were to be appointed by the Governor-General as Prime Minister, that person and any Ministers of State for the Commonwealth who might be appointed on the advice of that person would have the confidence of the House, and that person agrees to be appointed as Prime Minister; and

                     (b)  the Prime Minister has not resigned from office before the passing of that further resolution;

the Governor-General shall dismiss the Prime Minister from office.