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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 1 Hansard (29 April) . . Page.. 185 ..

Mr Smyth: It is your motion.

Mr Berry: You can always tell the billygoats by the way they butt in.

MR SPEAKER: Order! I would not say it was necessarily outrageous - "Gilbertian" might be a better word - but go on.

Mr Berry: Mr Speaker, your witty comment is interesting, but hardly relevant to the standing order which I am trying to raise with you. Mr Speaker, standing order 58 makes it very clear that a member shall not digress from the subject matter of any question under discussion. The subject matter of this question is the tabling of a document by the close of business today, and subsequent amendments. Mr Speaker, this nonsense is merely wasting the time of the Assembly. If this is the rule, Mr Speaker, that you intend to apply to debates in relation to matters in this Assembly, I hope that you will apply it evenly to every member of the place in future.

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, you have already ruled on this point of order.

MR SPEAKER: I have, and I have just written out, "That Mr Corbell and all other members and parties table by close of business today their criteria for privatisation of public assets". That is the subject that we are debating.

Debate interrupted.


MR CORBELL (5.10): Mr Speaker, I seek leave of the Assembly to move dissent from your ruling.

Leave granted.

MR CORBELL: Mr Speaker, I apologise for the short delay while I provided the Clerk with some words. I move:

That the Speaker's ruling be dissented from.

Mr Speaker, the ruling you have just made in relation to Mr Berry's point of order is quite wrong. It is quite wrong because, Mr Speaker, what we are dealing with here is the issue of relevance and what you are allowed to include in a debate and what you are not. Mr Humphries, for the past seven or eight minutes, has been speaking on the specific issue and debating the criteria associated with the document I tabled in the Assembly earlier. Mr Speaker, that is not in any way the substantive matter in Mr Humphries's motion.

Mr Humphries: It is relevant to the motion.

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