Senate debates

Thursday, 25 November 2010



7:37 pm

Photo of Joe LudwigJoe Ludwig (Queensland, Australian Labor Party, Manager of Government Business in the Senate) Share this | | Hansard source

I move:

I move:

That the committee have leave to sit again at a later hour of the day.

Question agreed to.

I seek leave to move a motion relating to divisions being called today.

Leave granted.

I move:

That divisions may take place after 4.30 pm today.

We have become aware that the motion moved this morning contained a technical oversight in that standing orders provide for no divisions and no quorums after 4.30 pm on Thursday, which is standing order 57(3). As a consequence, that order still stands. This means that no divisions can take place today if a motion is moved and a division is called. The chair would then move that the division shall be moved to the next day of sitting, which is Friday, 26 November.

7:39 pm

Photo of Mitch FifieldMitch Fifield (Victoria, Liberal Party, Manager of Opposition Business in the Senate) Share this | | Hansard source

The opposition understands the circumstances which have necessitated this particular motion. As we are all aware, standing order 57(3) states:

If a division is called for on Thursday after 4.30 pm, the matter before the Senate shall be adjourned until the next day of sitting at a time fixed by the Senate.

We understand that it is inadvertent that that provision is still in effect. The government clearly wants a resolution to legislation that is before the chamber. It is certainly not our intention to thwart a resolution, so we do understand that it was through inadvertence that this situation has arisen.

7:40 pm

Photo of Chris EvansChris Evans (WA, Australian Labor Party, Leader of the Government in the Senate) Share this | | Hansard source

On behalf of the government, I thank the opposition—Senator Fifield and Senator Brandis, acting opposition leader in the Senate—for their cooperation. I also thank the Greens and the Independents for their cooperation in working our way out of the little procedural conundrum we ended up in. I do appreciate the cooperation of the chamber.

Question agreed to.