Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 4 Hansard (28 March) . . Page.. 985..
Wednesday, 28 March 2001
MR SPEAKER (Mr Cornwell) took the chair at 10.30 am and asked members to stand in silence and pray or reflect on their responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.
MR BERRY (10.31): I seek leave to move a motion to reorder Assembly business at notice No 1.
MR BERRY: I move:
(1) Assembly business, order of the day No 1 relating to the presentation of standing committee reports on the draft budget initiatives take precedence after the presentation of any papers tomorrow, 29 March 2001;
(2) the foregoing provisions of this resolution have effect notwithstanding anything contained in the standing orders.
I understand why this item of business is there: it is there because the standing orders require it to be given precedence on the notice paper. The reason I am moving this-and I have mentioned it to staff of the Manager of Government Business-is that we feel that this was a matter that ought to have been dealt with yesterday. The government decided that it was content to finish up at 6 o'clock yesterday and we did not get to the matter.
Mr Speaker, it is a matter that is more appropriately dealt with on non-private members business days and I have so moved.
MR STEFANIAK (Minister for Education and Attorney-General) (10.32): The only point I would make in relation to that, Mr Speaker, is that it was by consent, I understand, that the Assembly adjourned last night at the time it did. It was not through the unilateral action of the government. I think the Manager of Government Business, who is away today, made that point, and the opposition were quite happy with it, so we adjourned by consent.
There is another practical problem, Mr Speaker, and that is that Mr Smyth, to whom I understand some of these motions relate, is at a funeral. Obviously, he will get back as soon as he can. Also, we did not deal with about six bills which were also on the paper yesterday, and which will go over as well. I just wonder whether it might not be better to have this at a later stage today. I think it probably would be better just to get this out of the way. I think the government would actually want to see this out of the way.