Page 5678 - Week 15 - Thursday, 10 December 2009

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MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER: You need to remind yourself of standing orders 55 and 202 and withdraw the imputation against the member.

MR HANSON: I withdraw.

Mr Smyth: What is the imputation?

MR HANSON: I am not sure what it is, but I withdraw whatever it is.

It is a remarkable situation. This is about the government not facing up to scrutiny and this is about preventing the opposition, and indeed the crossbench, from discussing private members’ business.

A couple of weeks ago, I was at a public service seminar in the reception room at the Assembly, with Mr Smyth and Ms Le Couteur. I will be fascinated when we hear her speak on this topic, if she does. She was complaining that there were not enough private members days, so she could not introduce the bills, the legislation and the work that she wanted to. She was saying that it is a real shame that we do not have more days. We are restricted to 14 a year; it would be good if we could have more private members days. I made the point that last year the Liberals had advocated more private members days. The public service then inquired, “Who makes the decision on how many days you have?” It was somewhat ironic that Ms Le Couteur then had to confess that, ultimately, it was us.

It was a very interesting position that Ms Le Couteur took. She was advocating for more private members days; she was dissatisfied by the lack of private members’ business items she had in terms of legislation that she was able to introduce. At the same time, she freely admitted that it was her party, ultimately, in this place, that made the decision to restrict the number of private members’ business days that were available.

I just want to make that point. This is lazy. This is about avoiding scrutiny and account. This is hypocrisy from the Greens. On the one hand, they say that they are the champions of committee work; then their leader fails to turn up to much of the committee hearings that were heard through estimates.

Ms Bresnan: On a point of order, Mr Assistant Speaker: Mr Hanson was asked to withdraw a comment which he has just made again. He is making imputations about Ms Hunter which are untrue.

MR HANSON: It’s true.

Ms Bresnan: Not true.

Mr Smyth: What is the imputation?

MR HANSON: Mr Speaker, on the point of order: I would recommend that if Ms Bresnan has any evidence to counter what I am saying she should present it. The simple fact is that Ms Hunter failed to attend the sessions during the estimates. That is

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