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Business of the House: Program

I rise to speak on the government business program. The Greens will not be opposing this government business program. There are four bills listed on the program. We have not foreshadowed any amendments or requested consideration in detail of any of these bills, not that that would make the slightest difference. I do not think the government has been too committed to delivering on its election commitment to make consideration in detail a standard feature of the consideration of bills.

There is one thing that is missing from the notice paper which is a glaring omission, and that is of course the Greens Alcoa (Portland Aluminium Smelter) (Amendment) Act Amendment Bill 2015 which was voted down at the first reading without debate and without a chance to go on the notice paper. You can imagine the outrage or the indignant response if the Greens suddenly started voting down — —

Ms Allan — On a point of order, Acting Speaker, the matter the member is referring to is outside the scope of this debate, and I ask you to bring him back to debating the issue at hand.

The ACTING SPEAKER (Mr Angus) — Order! I uphold the point of order and call the member back to the government business program.

Mr HIBBINS — On the point of order, Acting Speaker, when it comes to the government business program the lead speakers from both the government and the opposition are allowed to make wide-ranging contributions, and what I am referring to is the business of the house. I am referring to the notice paper which was referenced in previous contributions, and I ask that the Greens be extended that courtesy.

The ACTING SPEAKER (Mr Angus) — Order! I uphold the point of order and call the member back to the matter before the house.

Mr HIBBINS — Continuing on, you can imagine the outrage if the Greens voted down bills on their first reading. We will not be doing that. The Greens believe that all bills in this house, whether they are government bills or private members bills, should be given full and due consideration and be able to be debated in this place.

The previous week highlighted the unusual practice in this house of not having any time for general business to take precedence. I would ask the government to give strong consideration to not having a repeat of last week, when a bill that had passed in the upper house came into this house where the debate was gagged and the bill was taken off the notice paper, and instead to allow private members bills like the one brought in the previous week and other motions to be debated in this house.