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Monday, 6 December 2004
Page: 122


Senator ALLISON (9:43 PM) —I move:

That the House of Representatives be requested to make the following amendment:

(1) Page 63 (after line 17), at the end of Division 2, add:

69A Grants to provide establishment assistance

Government school

(1) The Minister may make a determination authorising payment of financial assistance to a State to provide establishment assistance for a Government school in the State for one or two program years if the circumstance in subsection (3) applies to the school.

Note: The amount must not exceed the maximum amount worked out under subsection (4).

School system

(2) The Minister may make a determination authorising payment of financial assistance to a State to provide establishment assistance for an approved school system in the State for one or two program years in relation to a school included in the system if the circumstance in subsection (3) applies to the school.

Note: The amount must not exceed the maximum amount worked out under subsection (4).

Subsection (3) circumstance

(3) The circumstance in this subsection is that the Minister varies the list of government schools in relation to the school because the school is covered by paragraph (c) of the definition of new school proposal.

Maximum amount

(4) The amount under subsection (1) or (2) for a program year in relation to a school must not exceed the amount worked out using the formula:

       

where:

establishment amount for the program year is:

(a) if the program year is the year in which the Minister varies the list of government schools in relation to the school—$500; and

(b) if the program year is the year after the year referred to in paragraph (a)—$250.

—————

Statement pursuant to the order of the Senate of 26 June 2000—

The effect of amendment (1) will be to increase in the number of schools eligible for financial assistance under the bill.

The effect of amendments (2) and (3) will be to increase the financial assistance for general recurrent grants for government schools.

The increased number of schools eligible for financial assistance and the increased financial assistance for general recurrent grants for government schools will have the effect of increasing expenditure under the bill.

The increased expenditure would be met from the standing appropriation in clause 133 of the bill and the amendments are therefore presented as requests.

Statement by the Clerk of the Senate pursuant to the order of the Senate of 26 June 2000

The Senate has long accepted that an amendment should take the form of a request if it would have the effect of increasing expenditure under an appropriation clause in a bill. These requests are therefore in accordance with the precedents of the Senate.

It is our view that establishment grants that are made available to non-government schools ought to be made available to all schools, regardless of whether they are government or otherwise. The government often say that their increases in funding to non-government schools follow increases in funding to students attending those schools. If they are happy to let funding follow students then it ought to follow that they do so in government schools. This request is not for an enormous amount of money, but we think that the principle is important and that this entitlement should flow to both sectors.

Question negatived.