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Thursday, 16 October 2008
Page: 6279

The following orders of the day relating to committee reports and government responses were considered:

Legal and Constitutional Affairs—Standing Committee—Report—Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Laws Bill 2008 [No. 2]. Motion of Senator Ludlam to take note of report agreed to.

Community Affairs—Standing Committee—Report—Towards recovery: Mental health services in Australia. Motion of the chair of the committee (Senator Moore) to take note of report called on. Debate adjourned till the next day of sitting, Senator Boyce in continuation.

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade—Standing Committee—Fourth progress report—Reforms to Australia’s military justice system. Motion of the chair of the committee (Senator Bishop) to take note of report agreed to.

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport—Standing Committee—Report—Implementation, operation and administration of the legislation underpinning Carbon Sink Forests. Motion of the chair of the committee (Senator Sterle) to take note of report called on. Debate adjourned till the next day of sitting, Senator Macdonald in continuation.

State Government Financial Management—Select Committee—Report. Motion of the chair of the committee (Senator Macdonald) to take note of report called on. Debate adjourned till the next day of sitting, Senator Macdonald in continuation.

Procedure—Standing Committee—First report of 2008—Restructuring question time; Reference of bills to committees; Questions to chairs of committees; Deputy chairs of committees; Leave to make statements. Motion of the chair of the committee (Senator Ferguson)—That the Senate take note of the report called on—and on the amendment moved by the Leader of the Family First Party (Senator Fielding)—At the end of the motion, add “, but the Senate is of the opinion that, instead of restructuring question time in a manner that could reduce the accountability of ministers to the Senate, the rules relating to questions and answers, contained in past presidential rulings, which require, amongst other things, that questions actually be questions relating to ministerial responsibilities, and that answers be responsive and relevant to the questions, be written into the standing orders, and that the Procedure Committee, with the assistance of external expert advisers, review the effectiveness of question time and the application of those rules at the end of each period of sittings”. On the motion of the Parliamentary Secretary for Social Inclusion and the Voluntary Sector (Senator Stephens) debate was adjourned till the next day of sitting.

Environment, Communications and the Arts—Standing Committee—Report—Great Barrier Reef Marine Park and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2008. Motion of Senator Collins to take note of report called on. Debate adjourned till the next day of sitting, Senator Macdonald in continuation.

Environment, Communications and the Arts—Standing Committee—Report—Save Our Solar (Solar Rebate Protection) Bill 2008 [No. 2]. Motion of the chair of the committee (Senator McEwen) to take note of report agreed to.