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Tuesday, 10 March 2009
Page: 985

Senator LUDWIG (Manager of Government Business in the Senate) (12:31 PM) —by leave—I move:

That, on Tuesday, 10 March 2009:

(a)   the hours of meeting shall be 12.30 pm to 6.30 pm, and 7 pm to 11.40 pm;

(b)   the routine of business from 7 pm shall be government business only;

(c)   that from 7 pm, any question in respect of which a division is called for, and any questions consequent on the outcome of that division, shall stand postponed until the next day of sitting at a time fixed by the Senate; and

(d)   the question for the adjournment of the Senate shall be proposed at 11 pm.

I thank the chamber for its support of this motion. It is the case that at this time of the year we have substantive legislation to deal with in the days available. We obviously were not able to work on Monday, as it was a public holiday in Canberra. We need the time. There are a substantive number of bills. There are more than 20-odd packages in total to be worked through in the fortnight, if I can call it a fortnight; it is actually nine days. That also requires a number of substantive bills. Those bills include the Fair Work Bill. This time will allow contributions on the second reading tonight. This will be on what we would generally refer to as a no divisions and no quorums basis. That will allow those people to make their contributions. As I understand it, there is a substantive list of people who are keen to speak on that bill. Therefore, this time will allow them to make their contributions. It will not be determined this evening. As the motion foreshadows, debate will spill over to tomorrow. Given the number of speakers, it may take part of this week to be concluded.