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Thursday, 14 February 2008
Page: 433

Mr HAWKER (9:44 AM) —Madam Deputy Speaker, I too congratulate you on your election to your very important role. I would like to record my appreciation to the former member for Page and former Deputy Speaker, the Hon. Ian Causley. Ian served as the Deputy Speaker from 2002 through to his retirement at the last election. I think he did a truly outstanding job.

Ian came to federal parliament in the seat of Page in 1996, following on from time in the New South Wales state parliament from 1984 to 1996. During that time he had a fairly distinguished career, holding a number of portfolios. He had very fond memories of the New South Wales parliament, so much so that we got a daily reminder of the clerks’ meeting. The Deputy Clerk, who is in the chamber, would recall well that we always heard how it was done in New South Wales! Nonetheless, when I was elected Speaker in 2004 I really appreciated the advice and support that Ian Causley gave. It was always frank advice but it was always constructive.

The other thing about Ian for which I commend him is that he was always punctual. When he was taking over in the chair you could rely on Ian to turn up not only on time but quite often early. That was something that was also much appreciated. As I say, he was always a source of sound advice. He earned the respect very much of all members of parliament for the way in which he upheld the standards when he was in the chair and ensured that democratic processes could continue. I know that my predecessor, the Hon. Neil Andrew, would echo everything I am saying because he too appreciated the great support that Ian gave him.

In his valedictory speech I think Ian was quite happy to describe himself in a number of ways that were quite frank. He said:

No-one will ever die wondering where I stand on certain issues.

That was a fairly good way of summing it up. He also talked about his philosophy. I do not have much time but I will quote one point he made:

In many ways I believe that our democracy has been taken over by the fact that the minority is always heard too much these days.

He made a very telling point. Again, I wish to record my appreciation for the tireless work that Ian did, particularly for the great support that he gave me as Speaker and the excellent way in which he contributed to the parliament, especially in ensuring that our chamber continued to function properly.