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Thursday, 1 August 2019
Page: 1833

Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction

Ms BUTLER (Griffith) (14:38): My question is to the Minister for Energy and Emissions Reduction. I refer to his previous answers. Did the minister or any of his associated entities or indirect interests receive any payments, income or benefit from the $80 million water buyback from Eastern Australia Agriculture?

Government members interjecting

The SPEAKER: Leader of the House—members on my right!—I haven't called you yet. I am trying to persuade some people to stop interjecting before I eject them. The Leader of the House?

Mr Porter: Mr Speaker, the question goes to matters that the minister is not responsible for or officially connected with as a matter of public affairs administration or pending proceedings in the House.

Mr Burke: Mr Speaker, to the point of order: the Leader of the House is correct, if we were relying on that, but we're not. We're relying on the previous answers that the minister has given, where he referred to his different interests and where he referred to associated entities. That's what the question draws on.

The SPEAKER: I'm just going to take the House back to when we were in this situation before, and I'm just going to reaffirm an earlier ruling I made. I did listen to the question very closely. I had a problem with it instantly, I have to say. I think if we go back to when we had a series of these questions which occurred a couple of years go, and the member for Isaacs was asking a lot of them, I allowed a number of them where a connection was made but what I also said was that that did not then open it up to simply just say, 'I refer you to your previous answers' and ask a question not related to the minister's responsibilities and accept somehow it connects together. That question falls in that category and I'm ruling it out of order.