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Friday, March 16, 2007

Victorian Parliament muscles up on disclosure

Heaven forbid!

According to this report in the Herald Sun the Victorian Upper House has passed a resolution that will require the Government to table documents where a majority of the House votes in favour.

The resolution passed 21 to 19 despite strong opposition from the Labor Government.

The model is based on one that has operated in NSW Legislative Council for some years. The NSW Government (unsuccessfully) went all the way to the High Court to try to resist disclosure, and last year NSW Crown Solicitor, Ian Knight famously decried as a "distortion" of our system of government.

Fancy, I wonder why another house of parliament isn't satisfied with what the Government says, and as the representative of the people, wants to have a look for itself? It comes down to ministerial credibility, and it's up to ministers to show us why they should be taken at their word.

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