House debates

Wednesday, 22 August 2018

Statement by the Speaker

Fowler, Mr Peter

3:16 pm

Photo of Tony SmithTony Smith (Speaker) Share this | Hansard source

Before members leave, I've got a very short statement. I want to say a few words about one of the staff of the Department of the House of Representatives, Peter Fowler, who is having his last sitting week in the House. Peter's there in the front row of the gallery this afternoon.

In December 1982, Peter was seconded from the Parliamentary Library, where he had worked, to the House of Representatives Procedure Office, where he established the procedural records system. Peter's been involved heavily in the preparation of all of the editions of House of Representatives Practice since the second edition, back in 1989. This has included extensive research, drafting of text and coordinating of all aspects of publishing. Of course, Peter has been very heavily involved in the most recent 7th edition that members have. There can be no doubt that such a dedicated focus on the main procedural reference volume of the House has been of considerable value in the continuity of the development of the text and a benefit to all of us.

Peter's also made a valuable contribution to the work of the Procedure Committee. Of particular significance was his work for that committee's 1993 report About time: bills, questions and working hours. That report led to many important reforms, including the establishment of the Federation Chamber, initially called the Main Committee, and which Peter has served as a deputy clerk. Peter also served as a deputy clerk in this chamber.

In 1988 he was awarded an Australia Day medallion to acknowledge his significant contribution to parliament and the department. His sustained focus and interest in House procedure has made him an expert, and he has offered guidance and assistance to many new staff over the years. We wish Peter and his wife, Anne, all the best in retirement and, of course, he leaves on a high after the publication of the 7th edition of the House of Representatives Practice. Congratulations, Peter.

Honourable members: Hear, hear!


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