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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2103 Week 13 Hansard (29 October) . . Page.. 3917..


Royal succession—rule changes

Paper and statement by minister

MS GALLAGHER (Molonglo—Chief Minister, Minister for Regional Development, Minister for Health and Minister for Higher Education) (3.25): For the information of members I present the following paper:

Royal Succession—Changes to rules under the United Kingdom's Succession to the Crown Act 2013—Request to Commonwealth to enact changes—Copy of letter from the Chief Minister to the Prime Minister.

I seek leave to make a statement in relation to the paper.

Leave granted.

MS GALLAGHER: The United Kingdom recently made changes to its rules of royal succession to allow for succession regardless of gender, to remove the bar on succession for a person who marries a Catholic, and to limit the requirement for the monarch's consent to the marriage of a descendant of King George II to the first six persons in line to the throne.

In April of this year the Council of Australian Governments agreed to a hybrid model to implement the same changes to the rules of royal succession in Australia nationally and within each jurisdiction. Under the hybrid model states may choose to enact state legislation dealing with the rules of succession but will also request the commonwealth, under section 51(xxxviii) of the constitution, to enact legislation. Being a territory, the ACT does not need to enact its own legislation to pass requesting legislation, so it is a little different there. Any law passed by the commonwealth will apply to the territory under section 122 of the constitution.

However, to formalise the process, and consistent with previous practice, I have written to the Prime Minister requesting that the commonwealth pass legislation in the form of a Succession to the Crown Bill (Commonwealth), noting that the bill's introduction is subject to the states first passing requesting legislation. I have tabled a copy of my letter to the Prime Minister and I commend it to the Assembly.

Mr Hanson: Could you ask that it be noted, please?

MS GALLAGHER: I move:

That the Assembly takes note of the paper.

MR HANSON (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (3.27): I certainly welcome the view that the government has that things are best done by the commonwealth, rather than having a situation where states would pass individual laws that would then be inconsistent. I certainly note that; I think it might be relevant to other debates that we have had in this place.


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