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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 08 Hansard (Tuesday, 28 June 2005 2005) . . Page.. 2326 ..


That this Assembly reaffirms the principles of the Westminster system embodied in the “financial initiative of the Crown” and the limits that that initiative places on non-Executive Members in moving amendments other than those to reduce items of proposed expenditure.

That motion was subsequently carried, I am advised. I now refer you to standing order 201:

A Member, other than a Minister, may not move an amendment to a money proposal, as specified in standing order 200, if that amendment would increase the amount of public money of the Territory to be appropriated.

I draw your attention to your amendment where you seek to amend the net cost of outputs in column 3 of schedule 1 to increase the amount from $5,199,000 to $5,328,000. That attempted amendment offends the motion moved by Mr Humphries and carried by the Assembly. I therefore intend to rule it out of order.

MR MULCAHY: May I speak to that, Mr Speaker?

MR SPEAKER: Yes.

MR MULCAHY: I would just advance the view that I was conscious of the requirement not to increase the budget overall nor to effectively change the bottom line but, if you examine each of the amendments that I have put forward here, they create, in effect, a neutral outcome. By making the changes that are suggested, the total appropriation remains unchanged in each of the four examples that are contained within the amendments. So I don’t believe that it contravenes the decision to decrease the budget, which is not what we are asking in the context of this debate; nor does it seek to increase the value of the budget overall but simply to realign certain items that are being singled out within the context of my amendment.

MR SPEAKER: I have taken some advice from the Clerk on this. I take your point that it does not change the bottom line, but the motion that Mr Humphries moved, and it has been accepted as a motion of continuing effect in this place, is unequivocal. I will have to read it all again:

That this Assembly reaffirms the principles of the Westminster system embodied in the “financial initiative of the Crown” and the limits that that initiative places on non-Executive Members in moving amendments other than those to reduce items of proposed expenditure.

And what you have sought to do here is to increase it.

MR MULCAHY: If I were to reduce the amounts by a dollar, Mr Speaker, would that be consistent with that ruling? I would be seeking to move $128,999 from capital injection to net cost of outputs.

Mr Quinlan: On a point of order, Mr Speaker: can I just point out that I think Mr Mulcahy is trying to shift money from capital injection through to operating expenditure, in which case he is hitting the bottom line, unequivocally—whether it be


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