Gordon Hill

Gordon Hill

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    Opposition criticism of Govt handling of Parliament rejected

    10/12/1992 12:00 AM
     
     
    Mines Minister Gordon Hill has labelled the Opposition, 'hypocrites' for suggesting that the Government was to blame for certain legislation not being dealt with during the final session of Parliament.
     
    "The Government conducted its business extremely efficiently this year," Mr Hill said.
     
    "It passed more than 70 Bills as opposed to 60 last year - in spite of the fact that the Government put into practice its commitment to accountability, and turned over more than half of the Parliamentary sitting time in the Budget sittings to matters of primary interest to the Opposition."
     
    Mr Hill said in return, the Government had hoped that the Opposition would respond by dealing with Government legislation in a businesslike way.
     
    "We were bitterly disappointed - Liberal leader, Richard Court and the Opposition's leader in the Assembly, Colin Barnett, were obviously unable to exercise any discipline over their members in the Assembly, and allowed the Legislative Council to run completely out of control," he said.
     
    "The Council sat for only two thirds the time of the Assembly and as a result of Opposition filibustering, was only able to pass one or two Bills a week for most of the sittings.
     
    "On occasion, the Council conservatives even turned back legislation which had been approved by Richard Court and the Liberals in the Assembly.
     
    "On the other hand, they were able to waste time debating at length their own legislation which would have resulted in massive pay rises for Upper House Liberals.
     
    "As a result of this irresponsible behaviour, a small number of very important Bills, such as the Adoption Bill and the Mining Amendment Bill No 2, of which Mr Moore refers, were not dealt with even though the Government forced the Parliament to sit for 25 hours on its last day.
     
    "It is time that Richard Court and Colin Barnett forged a coalition between the Liberal Party in the Legislative Assembly and the Liberal Party in the Legislative Council, and put public legislative priorities ahead of Parliamentary stunts and point scoring," Mr Hill said.