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Wednesday, 13 September 2017
Page: 7102


Senator CORMANN (Western AustraliaMinister for Finance and Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate) (11:26): I thank Senator Bernardi. The provisions in this bill will apply from commencement until 15 November 2017. That means that they don't apply retrospectively to communications that have been made in the past, but any communications distributed by relevant means from the commencement of this bill will need to comply with all the relevant requirements, including the authorisation requirements. May I say that the leadership of both sides of this argument were advised very early on of the government's intention to move along these lines. Progressing this legislation was held up by the legitimate process in front of the High Court because, for understandable reasons, a number of key stakeholders were not prepared to meaningfully engage on this until the High Court had resolved the questions on the validity of this process, which, of course, it now has. But the answer to the question is that, from the commencement of this bill, any communication and any material that is distributed has to carry the authorisations as provided for in this bill.