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Wednesday, 10 May 1989
Page: 2154


Senator BOLKUS (Minister for Consumer Affairs)(11.24) —I hope, for Senator Hill's sake, that he gets that shadow ministerial switch that he may be seeking, to Foreign Affairs, because he has not really helped his cause this morning with that particular point. Before the Committee the point was made and evidence was adduced that this is not an unprecedented step. It has happened from time to time. In fact, evidence was produced to the Committee that it has happened four times. In four instances legislation has been allowed to be tested before a proclamation. So we are not dealing with an unprecedented situation. The basic point which we come back to is that once the legislation is passed the Federal Government will be negotiating--


Senator Hill —Where are the four precedents?


Senator BOLKUS —One of the precedents dealt with the Petroleum and Minerals Authority legislation in 1975. Parts of that were deferred by way of proclamation. As I said, there were other instances adduced by way of evidence to the Joint Select Committee on Corporations Legislation detailing other instances where there had been a deferred proclamation of particular parts of legislation. It is not anything new as the honourable senator might suggest.


Senator Hill —Which parts are you not going to proclaim?


Senator BOLKUS —In relation to the second point I made the position very clear in my first answer, let alone my fifteenth. Once we get together with the States, in a newfound cooperative spirit, maybe with the legislation having passed through the Parliament, we will be able to discuss with them what they do or do not want to challenge.