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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 8 Hansard (25 June) . . Page.. 2091 ..

Suspension of Standing Orders

MR BERRY (3.53): Mr Speaker, I move:

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent Mr Berry from moving a motion to discharge order of the day No. 13, Executive business, relating to the Trading Hours Bill 1996.

This motion arises, Mr Speaker, out of the comprehensive doing over of Mr De Domenico in relation to the Trading Hours Bill 1996 by his own colleagues. In the course of question time questions were put repeatedly to the Minister responsible for the Trading Hours Bill, according to the notice paper, that is, and he declined to answer them. Mr Speaker, Mr Humphries took on all of these questions. It is therefore clear that Mr De Domenico is not the Minister responsible for the Trading Hours Bill. Any Minister who introduces a Bill into this place ought to be brave enough to put himself in front of the members in this place and subject himself to questioning about that Bill before it is debated in this place.

Mr Speaker, this Minister obviously is not responsible for this Bill and I think that is a powerful argument for discharging the Bill from the paper. If the Government chooses to reintroduce it they ought to reintroduce it by way of a Minister who is prepared to answer questions about it in its entirety. Mr Speaker, if you do not like my speech in support of this motion, I wish you had been listening to Mrs Carnell's speech a minute ago in relation to the matter when she gave, effectively, a speech in support of my motion.

Mr Kaine: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. I am not sure what Mr Berry is debating but I understood that his motion was for the suspension of standing orders. I think he is ranging far beyond the reasons why we should consider suspending standing orders. He is into a much wider debate. I suggest that you call him to order and that he address his remarks to the question before the house.

MR SPEAKER: Thank you, Mr Kaine. I uphold the point of order. Mr Berry, I think you have explained adequately what you are - - -

MR BERRY: Perhaps, Mr Speaker, I have been a little overzealous in my explanation to the members opposite.

MR SPEAKER: I am sure you are, but then you normally are.

MR BERRY: It takes more work than one is used to.

MR SPEAKER: I think you have explained your reasons.

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