Federal Register of Legislation - Australian Government

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A Bill for an Act to provide for a Parliamentary Joint Committee to investigate establishing an Australia Fund, and for related purposes
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Registered 14 Nov 2018
Introduced Senate 14 Nov 2018

2016‑2017‑2018

 

The Parliament of the

Commonwealth of Australia

 

THE SENATE

 

 

 

 

Presented and read a first time

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund Bill 2018

 

No.      , 2018

 

(Senator Burston)

 

 

 

A Bill for an Act to provide for a Parliamentary Joint Committee to investigate establishing an Australia Fund, and for related purposes

  

  

  


Contents

Part 1—Preliminary                                                                                                             1

1............ Short title............................................................................................. 1

2............ Commencement................................................................................... 2

3............ Simplified outline of this Act.............................................................. 2

4............ Definitions.......................................................................................... 2

Part 2—Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund              4

Division 1—Establishment                                                                                         4

5............ Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund........................ 4

6............ Nomination of Committee members.................................................... 4

7............ Ceasing to be a Committee member.................................................... 5

Division 2—Functions and powers of the Committee                                  6

8............ Functions of the Committee................................................................ 6

9............ Powers of the Committee.................................................................... 7

Division 3—Procedures of the Committee                                                        8

10.......... Convening meetings............................................................................ 8

11.......... Presiding at meetings.......................................................................... 8

12.......... Quorum............................................................................................... 8

13.......... Voting at meetings.............................................................................. 8

14.......... Other powers and proceedings of the Committee................................ 8

Part 3—Miscellaneous                                                                                                         9

15.......... Sunset provision................................................................................. 9

 


A Bill for an Act to provide for a Parliamentary Joint Committee to investigate establishing an Australia Fund, and for related purposes

The Parliament of Australia enacts:

Part 1Preliminary

  

1  Short title

                   This Act is the Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund Act 2018.

2  Commencement

             (1)  Each provision of this Act specified in column 1 of the table commences, or is taken to have commenced, in accordance with column 2 of the table. Any other statement in column 2 has effect according to its terms.

 

Commencement information

Column 1

Column 2

Column 3

Provisions

Commencement

Date/Details

1.  The whole of this Act

The day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

 

Note:          This table relates only to the provisions of this Act as originally enacted. It will not be amended to deal with any later amendments of this Act.

             (2)  Any information in column 3 of the table is not part of this Act. Information may be inserted in this column, or information in it may be edited, in any published version of this Act.

3  Simplified outline of this Act

This Act establishes the Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund. The Committee is to investigate whether a body, to be known as the Australia Fund, should be established, and the appropriateness of existing bankruptcy and insolvency laws for businesses in times of crisis.

4  Definitions

                   In this Act:

                   commencement means the day that this Act commences.

                   Committee means the Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund for the time being constituted under this Act.

                   member means a member of the Committee, and includes the Chair.

times of crisis include times when there is a natural disaster (such as a drought, flood or bushfire) or a global financial downturn.

Part 2Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund

Division 1Establishment

5  Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund

             (1)  A committee of members of the Parliament, to be known as the Parliamentary Joint Committee on the Australia Fund, is to be appointed in accordance with the process and within the timeframes set out in this Part.

             (2)  The Committee is to consist of up to 10 members.

6  Nomination of Committee members

             (1)  The nomination process for Committee members is as follows:

                     (a)  1 senator may be nominated by the Leader of the Government in the Senate;

                     (b)  1 senator may be nominated by the Leader of the Opposition in the Senate;

                     (c)  2 senators may be nominated by any minority party or independent senator;

                     (d)  2 members of the House of Representatives may be nominated by the Government Whip or Whips;

                     (e)  2 members of the House of Representatives may be nominated by the Opposition Whip or Whips; and

                      (f)  2 members of the House of Representatives may be nominated by any minority party or independent member.

Note:          For restrictions on Committee membership, see subsection (3).

             (2)  The Leader of the Government in the Senate may also nominate a member of the committee to be the Chair.

             (3)  A member of the Parliament is not eligible for appointment as a member of the Committee if he or she is:

                     (a)  a Minister; or

                     (b)  the President of the Senate; or

                     (c)  the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

7  Ceasing to be a Committee member

             (1)  A member of the Committee ceases to hold office:

                     (a)  when the House of Representatives expires by the passing of time or is dissolved; or

                     (b)  if he or she becomes the holder of an office specified in subsection 6(3); or

                     (c)  if he or she ceases to be a member of the House of Parliament by which he or she was appointed; or

                     (d)  if he or she resigns his or her office as provided by subsection (2) or (3).

             (2)  A member appointed by the Senate may resign his or her office by writing signed by him or her and delivered to the President of the Senate.

             (3)  A member appointed by the House of Representatives may resign his or her office by writing signed by him or her and delivered to the Speaker of the House.

             (4)  Either House of the Parliament may appoint one of its members to fill a vacancy amongst the members of the Committee appointed by that House.

Division 2Functions and powers of the Committee

8  Functions of the Committee

                   The Committee has the following functions:

                     (a)  to investigate whether a body, to be known as the Australia Fund, should be established to support rural and manufacturing industries in Australia so that a business within those industries may continue to operate in times of crisis, and to provide the following kinds of assistance:

                              (i)  emergency or ongoing financial relief;

                             (ii)  a loan of money to such a business;

                            (iii)  act as a guarantor for all or part of a loan or proposed loan to such a business;

                            (iv)  purchase all or part of an existing loan to such a business;

                             (v)  capitalise or waive interest owed by such a business;

                            (vi)  assume control of such a business for a particular period;

                           (vii)  grant money to an appropriate industry body;

                          (viii)  grant money to such a business for the purpose of purchasing new technology to make it more economically viable and competitive or for the purpose of restructuring it; and

                     (b)  to assess whether:

                              (i)  existing bankruptcy and insolvency laws should be modified or temporarily relaxed for businesses in times of crisis; and

                             (ii)  any foreign bankruptcy or insolvency laws should be adopted as laws of the Commonwealth; and

                     (c)  to report to both Houses of Parliament on its recommendations on the matters mentioned in paragraphs (a) and (b) within 30 days of its final deliberations, and the reasons for those recommendations.

9  Powers of the Committee

                   The Committee may do all or any of the following:

                     (a)  call for witnesses to attend and for documents to be produced;

                     (b)  conduct proceedings at any place it sees fit;

                     (c)  sit in public or in private;

                     (d)  report from time to time;

                     (e)  adjourn from time to time and sit during any adjournment of the Senate and the House of Representatives;

                      (f)  proceed to the dispatch of business notwithstanding that not all members have been duly nominated and appointed and notwithstanding any vacancy.

Division 3Procedures of the Committee

10  Convening meetings

                   The Chair must convene such meetings of the Committee as the Chair considers are necessary for the efficient performance of the Committee’s functions.

11  Presiding at meetings

             (1)  The Chair is to preside at meetings of the Committee at which he or she is present.

             (2)  If the Chair is absent, the members present must elect one of their number to preside at the meeting.

12  Quorum

                   At a meeting of the Committee, 3 members of the Committee constitute a quorum, but if a question is to be voted on at the meeting, the quorum must include one Government member of either House and one non‑Government member of either House.

13  Voting at meetings

             (1)  A question arising at a meeting of the Committee is to be determined by a majority of the votes of the members present and voting.

             (2)  The member presiding at the meeting:

                     (a)  has a deliberative vote; and

                     (b)  in the event of an equally divided vote, also a casting vote.

14  Other powers and proceedings of the Committee

                   All other matters relating to the powers and proceedings of the Committee are to be determined by resolution of both Houses of the Parliament.

Part 3Miscellaneous

  

15  Sunset provision

                   This Act ceases to have effect the day after the Committee tables its final report in each House of the Parliament.