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Order of the day read for the consideration of the Procedure Committee's first report of 2009.

The Minister for Human Services (Senator Ludwig) moved—That—

 (a) the Senate notes the committee's comments on restructuring question time and legislative and general purpose standing committees; and

 (b) the amendments to standing orders proposed in the attachment to the report be adopted.

Question put and passed.

Accordingly the standing orders were amended as follows:

 72 Questions without notice

 Amended to read as follows:

  (1) At the time provided questions may be put to ministers relating to public affairs.

  (2) A question may be put to the President in relation to matters for which the President has responsibility.

 (3) (a) The asking of each question shall not exceed one minute and the answering of each question shall not exceed 4 minutes.

   (b) The asking of each supplementary question shall not exceed one minute and the answering of each supplementary question shall not exceed one minute.

 (4) (a) After question time motions may be moved without notice to take note of answers given that day to questions.

   (b) A senator may speak for not more than 5 minutes on such a motion.

   (c) The time for debate on all motions relating to answers to questions without notice on any day shall not exceed 30 minutes.

 25 Legislative and general purpose

 At the end of subparagraph (7)(d), add:

 (e) If a member of a committee is unable to attend a meeting of the committee, that member may in writing to the chair of the committee appoint a participating member to act as a substitute member of the committee at that meeting. If the member is incapacitated or unavailable, a letter to the chair of a committee appointing a participating member to act as a substitute member of the committee may be signed on behalf of the member by the leader of the party or group on whose nomination the member was appointed to the committee.

 54 Adjournment without motion

 At the end of paragraph (5), add:

 (6) On the question for the adjournment of the Senate on Tuesday, a senator who has spoken once subject to the time limit of 10 minutes may speak again for not more than 10 minutes if no other senator who has not already spoken once wishes to speak, provided that a senator may by leave speak for not more than 20 minutes on one occasion.

 57 Routine of business

 Paragraph (3) is amended as to read as follows:

 (3) If a division is called for on Thursday after 4.30 pm, the matter before the Senate shall be adjourned until the next day of sitting at a time fixed by the Senate.

Order of the day discharged: Senator Ludwig, by leave, moved—That order of the day no. 14 relating to committee reports and government responses (Procedure Committee—First report of 2008) be discharged from the Notice Paper.

Question put and passed.