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Tuesday, 5 November 1985
Page: 1577


Senator HAMER(9.53) —Under standing order 196A, I move:

That the Interstate Road Transport Bill 1985 and the Interstate Road Transport Charge Bill 1985 be referred to the Standing Committee on National Resources for inquiry and report by the first sitting day in February 1986.

The Opposition members of the Committee are confident that this is reasonable for the Committee. These Bills are a perfect example of the sort of Bill that should be referred to a Senate committee for public examination. There is no urgency about the Bills. Even the so-called fast track provision of the Minister for Transport (Mr Peter Morris) cannot be proclaimed before 1 July next year. There have been claims of insufficient consultation with large sections of the industry. There are problems with the regulations, which it is claimed are too general and too broad. The agreements with the States are not yet finalised. The Inter-State Commission is in the process of producing a report on cost recovery for interstate road and rail services.

I do not want to repeat all the arguments that were used in the second reading debate, but I merely reiterate that the weight of them is such that it would be irresponsible of this Senate to pass the Bills without having the implications thoroughly and publicly investigated by a Senate committee, and I have moved accordingly.