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NOTICES

Senator Baume: To move on the next day of sitting--That the Senate--

(a) notes that:

(i) the piggery holding company half-owned by the Prime

Minister (Mr Keating), Brown Hatton Group Pty Limited,

on 28 February 1994 reported a further loss of $2.7

million for the year to June 1993, lifting its

accumulated losses to $13 million and confirming it as

technically insolvent with reported liabilities of $25

million, far exceeding assets of only $18 million,

(ii) the nine group companies whose returns for the 1992-93

financial year are available at the Australian

Securities Commission have reported an aggregate

deficiency in shareholders' funds of $2 million,

subject to inter-company balances and after taking into

account a controversial revaluation of assets,

(iii) the Prime Minister's and his partner Mr Constantinidis'

equity in this group amounts to the $860 000 they have

together invested in Euphron Pty Limited,

(iv) Mr Constantinidis has stated that an additional $15

million will be needed by the group to finance its

planned expansion at Parkville, and

(v) the group's gearing of borrowed funds to equity was

already 30 to 1 by June 1993, representing about a 3

per cent equity in the business, and would represent a

gearing ratio of 46 to 1 were the additional funds all

borrowed, leaving only a 2 per cent equity in the

business; and

(b) calls on the Prime Minister to advise farmers with better

financial ratios than these who have been thrown off their land

by the banks how to get such friendly treatment.

Senator Parer: To move on the next day of sitting--That the Joint

Committee of Public Accounts be authorised to hold an in camera hearing

during the sitting of the Senate on 3 March 1994 from 11.15 a.m. to

12.30 p.m.

Senator Patterson: To move on the next day of sitting--That the Senate--

(a) notes that the Prime Minister (Mr Keating), in his maiden speech

in the House of Representatives, stated:

"In the last couple of years the Government has boasted about

the increasing number of women in the work force. Rather than

something to be proud of I feel that this is something of which

we should be ashamed.

"Is this Government doing anything about child endowment? Is it

doing anything to put the working wife back in her home? It is

not. It engages in a lot of claptrap.

"It is time we considered the enormous cost of bringing migrants

to this country ... After all, the best migrant is the infant

Australian';

(b) hopes that the leopard has indeed changed its spots and that our

sensitive new age right of Labor Prime Minister now has a better

understanding of the needs and aspirations of Australian women,

and in particular, migrant women; and

(c) calls on the Prime Minister to "come clean' if he is occupying

his self-appointed position as the Minister for the Status of

Women merely in a caretaker role while he waits in vain for

someone to rise from the Labor ranks who is capable of being an

effective advocate for Australian women.

The Minister for Defence (Senator Ray), at the request of the Minister

for Veterans' Affairs (Senator Faulkner): To move on the next day of

sitting--That the following bill be introduced: A Bill for an Act to

amend the Industrial Relations Act 1988, and for related purposes.

Industrial Relations Amendment Bill 1994.

The Leader of the Opposition in the Senate (Senator Hill): To move on

the next day of sitting--

(1) That a select committee, to be known as the Select Committee for

an Independent Inquiry into Sports Grants, be appointed to

examine and report, on or before 30 June 1994, on the operation

of the program now known as the Community Cultural, Recreational

and Sporting Facilities Program, from its announcement in 1988,

with particular reference to:

(a) the means by which the availability of such grants was

communicated to potential applicants;

(b) the guidelines, if any, devised to maximise objectivity

in the selection of successful applications and to

protect against potential political, regional or other

bias;

(c) the extent to which such guidelines were adhered to in

the selection of successful applications;

(d) the nature and extent of the respective roles of the

administering department and minister and his or her

advisers and staff in the process of selection of

successful applications;

(e) the consequences of the respective roles taken for the

efficiency of the administration of the program;

(f) the consequences of the respective roles taken for the

susceptibility of the program to allegations of fraud

and corruption;

(g) the role of the bureaucracy and in particular the

administering department and the Department of Finance

in safeguarding against fraud and political bias;

(h) the role of the Auditor-General in safeguarding against

fraud and political bias; and

(i) with respect to the future administrationof similar

programs, any safeguards or guidelines which might be

put in place to ensure proper accountability for the

expenditure of public moneys.

(2) That the committee consist of six senators, as follows:

(a) two nominated by the Leader of the Government in the

Senate;

(b) three nominated by the Leader of the Opposition in the

Senate; and

(c) one nominated by the Leader of the Australian

Democrats.

(3) That:

(a) the committee appoint a Commissioner to assist it with

its inquiry;

(b) the Commissioner be a person who is or has been a judge

of a superior court; and

(c) the committee is to act in accordance with the

following principles:

that it at all times take care to protect, so far as it is

proper and reasonable to do so, the privacy,

confidentiality, rights and reputations of individuals,

whether appearing as witnesses before the committee or

otherwise,

that it summon witnesses to appear personally only when

satisfied that the circumstances demand it, that, so far

as is possible, witnesses be given notice of the matters

proposed to be dealt with, and that witnesses be given an

opportunity to reply in writing before appearing to give

evidence, and

that it give specific consideration in the case of each

proposed witness to the desirability of hearing evidence

in camera, if it is proper and reasonable to do so, and

that each witness be given an opportunity to apply for any

or all of his or her evidence to be given in private.

(4) That the committee proceed to the despatch of business

notwithstanding that all members have not been duly nominated

and appointed and notwithstanding any vacancy.

(5) That:

(a) the chair of the committee be elected by the members of

the committee;

(b) in the absence of agreement on the selection of a

chair, duly notified to the President, the allocation

of the chair shall be determined by the Senate;

(c) the deputy chair of the committee be appointed by the

chair from the members of the committee immediately

after the election of the chair;

(d) that the deputy chair act as chair when there is no

chair or the chair is not present at a meeting; and

(e) in the event of the votes on any question before the

committee being equally divided, the chair, or the

deputy chair when acting as chair, have a casting vote.

(6) That the quorum of the committee be three members.

(7) That the committee and any subcommittee have power to send for

and examine persons and documents, to move from place to place

and to sit in public or in private, notwithstanding any

prorogation of the Parliament or dissolution of the House of

Representatives.

(8) That the committee have power to appoint subcommittees

consisting of three or more of its members, and to refer to any

such subcommittee any of the matters which the committee is

empowered to consider, and that the quorum of a subcommittee be

a majority of the Senators appointed to the subcommittee.

(9) That the terms of reference of the inquiry be appropriately

advertised in the media.

(10) That the committee be provided with all necessary staff,

facilities and resources and be empowered to appoint persons

with specialist knowledge for the purposes of the committee,

with the approval of the President.

(11) That the committee be empowered to print from day to day such

documents and evidence as may be ordered by it, and a daily

Hansard be published of such proceedings as take place in

public.

(12) That the committee may report from time to time its proceedings

and evidence taken or any interim conclusions or

recommendationsarising from its inquiry, and may make regular

reports on the progress of its proceedings.

Senator Spindler: To move on the next day of sitting--That the Senate--

(a) notes:

(i) the statement by Sir Leon Brittan, the European Union's

Commissioner of External Economic Affairs, that

"Australia has the unenviable label of having the

highest textile and clothing tariffs in the

[Organisation for Economic Co-operation and

Development]',

(ii) that this statement is misleading in its selectivity

since in the textiles, clothing and footwear (TCF)

sector quantitative restrictions offer far more

effective protection than tariffs, and

(iii) that the statement by Sir Leon Brittan is not only

selective and misleading but also hypocritical since

Australia totally removed all quantitative restraints

more than a year ago while the European Union is to

maintain its substantial quantitative restrictions for

another 10 years under the recently-signed General

Agreement on Tariffs and Trade; and

(b) recommends that, in view of these more restrictive policies by

the European Union, the Australian Government should review the

effect of Australia's policies on the TCF sector and take

appropriate action to enable Australian TCF and other industries

to survive and offer employment to Australian workers.

Senator Chamarette: To move on the next day of sitting--That the

Senate--

(a) deplores the breaches by Australia of the Vienna Convention on

Diplomatic Relations through having agents of the Australian

Secret Intelligence Service (ASIS) pose as diplomats in

Australian embassies while conducting espionage activities;

(b) notes:

(i) with concern, the possible harm to Australia's

international relations in conducting such espionage,

and

(ii) the difficult and invidious position in which genuine

diplomatic staff are placed as a result of ASIS

operations; and

(c) urges the Government to state that it will not engage in any

further breaches of international law and to comply with that

statement.