Tuesday, 16 June 2020
Environment and Communications References Committee, Environment and Communications Legislation Committee; Reference
At the request of Senator Kitching, I move:
That the following matter be referred to the Environment and Communications References Committee for inquiry and interim report by Tuesday, 11 August 2020 with the final report due by the first sitting Tuesday of March 2021:
the future of Australia Post's service delivery, with particular reference to:
(a) the Australian Postal Corporation (Performance Standards) Amendment Regulations 2020 and their impact on services, the Australia Post workforce and affected businesses;
(b) the impact of COVID-19 on the financial position of Australia Post and its future;
(c) a sustainable plan for Australia Post to provide:
(i) services that meet community needs and expectations,
(ii) job security for its workforce, and
(iii) support for regional and metropolitan licensed post offices;
(d) international and domestic trends with parcels, letters and pricing; and
(e) any related matters.
I seek leave to move an amendment to the motion to the effect of substituting 'Environment and Communications Legislation Committee' for 'Environment and Communications References Committee'.
Omit "Environment and Communication References Committee", substitute "Environment and Communications Legislation Committee".
To assist the chamber, the subject matter of this motion and this referral is a temporary regulatory change that the government has initiated in the context of COVID-19. The period for the disallowance to be dealt with is by 25 August. Given there is provision in the reference, as moved, to have an interim report by 11 August, we would anticipate that, at that time, a recommendation could be made by that committee, but, if it is the wish of the chamber to bring the reporting date forward, I'm happy to move to that effect. The disallowance does come to a close—we've got to deal with it as a chamber—by 25 August. But you can move to that effect if you want to change it.
I'd like to move after having negotiations and talks with the post office workers union and the CEO. They are quite happy to have the hearing sooner rather than later and the reporting date down.
I seek leave to move an amendment to substitute 'Environment and Communications Legislation Committee' for 'Environment and Communications References Committee' and to bring forward the reporting date for the final report of that committee to 11 August.
Senator Cormann, you were granted leave to move the first amendment. I was about to put that. Would you like me to deal with first amendment separately to your second one or do both? Alright. Senator Cormann has withdrawn, with the leave of the chamber, his first proposal and he is now seeking leave to move the amendment in the terms he just sought.
(1) Omit "Environment and Communication References Committee", substitute "Environment and Communications Legislation Committee"; and (2) amend reporting date to 11 August 2020.