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Tuesday, 10 November 2015
Page: 8134


Senator FIFIELD (VictoriaManager of Government Business in the Senate, Minister for Communications, Minister for the Arts and Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Digital Government) (15:47): I seek leave to make a short statement.

The PRESIDENT: Leave is granted for one minute.

Senator FIFIELD: I appreciate the opposition indicating that they support the convention that the government of the day should determine the sitting schedule. Obviously this is a matter which is determined by both chambers, and it makes sense that both chambers have a common sitting pattern. It is not always possible, given that there are multiple considerations in determining a sitting pattern, to see that school holidays never coincide with sittings of the parliament. In relation to Senator Moore's comments about whether next year additional hours or days would be granted by the chamber: whether the government requests the chamber to do so will, to a large extent, be a function of whether the various groupings in this chamber facilitate quick passage of legislation. (Time expired)