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Thursday, 27 June 1996
Page: 2434

Senator MURPHY(6.41 p.m.) —by leave—I would like to raise some questions to find out why Senator Short has not been able to meet this return to order. I understand that he has said there is a problem with the privacy of some of the submissions. I think the Senate should take note of the National Commission of Audit report, because in the back it lists the submissions that were made. I cannot see any individual submissions. There are quite a number of submissions, although not a huge number, and they are very clearly identified as to which ones were made by government departments.

Senator Robert Ray —Which ones?

Senator MURPHY —The ones from government departments.

Senator Robert Ray —Who are they?

Senator MURPHY —The Department of Administrative Services; the Department of Defence; the Department of Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs, which made two submissions; the Department of Finance, which made four submissions; the Department of Health and Family Services; the Department of Social Security; the Department of Treasury, which made two submissions; and the Department of Transport and Regional Development. There was also a submission from the Federal Libraries Information Network and one from Victorian Treasury, which would be rather interesting.

That was about the sum total of government departments. So there is not a real lot of them. It may be worth reading some of the others: Adelaide Central Mission; Aged Care Australia; all states and territories joint submission; Association of Independent Schools of Victoria; AUSEV; Australian Association of Pathology Practices; Australian Automobile Association; Australian Bureau of Statistics; Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry; Australian Confederation of Childcare; Australian Council of Deans of Education; Australian Law Reform Commission; Australian Local Government Association; Australian Medical Association Ltd; Australian National Training Authority; Business Council of Australia, which made two submissions; CentaCare, Catholic Family Services; Commonwealth Department of Health and Family Services—another government department; Community and Public Sector Union; Computer Law Services Pty Ltd; Council on the Ageing; CRI Ltd; Curriculum Corporation; and P. Cuttance.

In addition to those submissions there are others from Brother Mortensen; National Catholic Education Commission; National Council of Independent Schools Association; National Tertiary Education Industry Union; Northern Territory Treasury, which made two submissions; Office of Government Information Technology; Steering Committee on National Performance Monitoring of Government Trading Enterprises; Smith Family; Victorian Treasury; and Ward-Ambler. As best as I can see, there may have been two individual submissions amongst all of those.

I think the opposition has made it fairly clear what it is seeking. I would have thought it would have taken a very short period of time, as Senator Faulkner has pointed out, for Senator Short to obtain a clearance for all submissions made to the commission by government departments. There is really no excuse for Senator Short not being able to meet this return to order.