Government Business program 23 June 2015

On behalf of the Greens I rise to oppose the government business program in this instance because legislation providing for the privatisation of the port of Melbourne should not be rushed through before the winter break. .

Legislation on the port should not be subject to the guillotine. This is a bill that requires serious consideration, scrutiny and debate. It is a major decision that will have far-reaching effects on exporters, farmers and small business, and their voices have not been heard in this debate. We know previous privatisations have been absolute disasters, so why rush this legislation through without giving serious consideration to the effects on those in the community who rely on the port and serious consideration to the most cost-effective way of funding our transport infrastructure? The Greens have been leading the charge in opposing the sell-off of our port, and we welcome the coalition following our lead in opposing the sale of the port. If the government is determined to rush the bill through the Parliament, it should at least bring it to the consideration-in-detail stage so that it can be properly scrutinised.

The Greens welcome some of the other bills listed for debate as part of a business program but not the bill dealing with the sell-off of the port. We certainly welcome the Road Safety Amendment (Private Car Parks) Bill 2015, and in the previous Parliament the Greens again led the charge on a legislative amendment to ensure that consumers were protected. We welcome the Energy Legislation Amendment (Publication of Retail Offers) Bill 2015 and the Adoption Amendment Bill 2015. The latter bill is another serious piece of legislation that again would be appropriate to go to the consideration-in-detail stage. As I said, the Greens oppose the government business program in this instance simply because we should not be rushing through the sale of the port