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Wednesday, 19 August 2009
Page: 5467

Senator BOB BROWN (Leader of the Australian Greens) (6:20 PM) —I thank the minister for that response. I have a little bit of difficulty with the use in the same sentence of ‘measured and timely’ and ‘COAG’ because COAG, as we know, is a lowest common denominator outcome where the eight or nine governments of the Commonwealth get together and whoever holds back prevents an agreement. With that in mind I ask the minister: has the rest of this legislation gone through COAG and, if it has, can the minister give some measure of assurance that this part of the legislation will go through the next appropriate COAG meeting? In short, I would like to know whether the minister anticipates having legislation which reflects the intent of this good amendment available, if it is found to be acceptable in the way we both think it is, this year.