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Estimates: Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee: Finance Portfolio: Department of Finance

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Senator RHIANNON: I will not take that long. Thank you, Chair. I understand that half a million dollars has been allocated for the department to scope a new computer system to manage MPs' allowances.

Senator Cormann: If you talk that MPs allowances, that is in outcome 3 later tonight. So that is after 8 o'clock.

Senator RHIANNON: Even though it is about the allocations of funding?

Senator Cormann: This is very much a matter for outcome 3.

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Estimates: Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee: Finance Portfolio: Australian Electoral Commission

Lee Rhiannon 20 Mar 2017

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Senator RHIANNON: I would like to ask some questions about scrutineering and the count. Is it reasonable that the number of scrutineers that candidates can appoint remains linked only to AEC officials and not to the amount of data entry staff?

Mr Pirani: It is actually a requirement in the act. Section 264 sets out the number of scrutineers that a candidate is able to engage. Section 264 says:

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Greens: Xenophon is wrong about super for housing

Lee Rhiannon 17 Mar 2017
The Greens say the ‘super for housing’ scheme is an idiotic idea that will make housing affordability worse, and have criticised Senator Nick Xenophon for signalling his support for it.
 
Greens spokesperson for housing Senator Lee Rhiannon said, “Senator Xenophon has been pushing the ‘super for housing’ idea since 2014. It wasn’t a good one then and it isn’t a good one now.
 
“The Liberals dredge this up every now and then, and disappointingly Senator Xenophon has jumped on board.
 
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Estimates: Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee: Agriculture and Water Resources Portfolio: Department of Agriculture and Water Resources

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Senator RHIANNON: I had a question on notice from October 2015, question 155. The answer from those estimates advised that the Australian government had not made any formal representations to Californian law makers about kangaroo market access to California. But I understand that the government—

Mr Quinlivan: Sorry, this is a different area and we will just get the right officers to the table.

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International Truth and Justice Project releases damning report about Sri Lankan military abuse

The International Truth and Justice Project have released a new report, based on several testimonies from survivors, about torture and abuse perpetrated by Sri Lanka’s security forces.
 
ITJP has also made a submission to the UN Committee for the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW), based on sworn statements from 55 women, about the torture and abuse they faced under the custody of the Rajapaksa and Sirisena governments. 
 
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Super for housing is an atrocious idea

Lee Rhiannon 16 Mar 2017
The Greens have responded to reports that the Turnbull government is considering allowing first home buyers to access their superannuation to buy a home, calling the idea ‘idiotic’.  
 
“Allowing first home buyers to dip into their super in order to buy a home is an atrocious idea and will likely make things worse for those hoping to purchase a home and in the long term for people when they retire,” Greens housing spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said. 
 
“This would add more fuel to the fire, not help to fix the housing crisis. 
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Estimates: Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Legislation Committee: Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio: Infrastructure Australia

Monday, 27 February 2017

CHAIR: Thank you. For the information of senators Ludlum and Rhiannon, what we do is give the call to your Greens and to our voting member. In this case, Senator Rice will yield the floor to you both for whatever time you need.

Senator STERLE: As long as there is no factional blue going on.

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Greens dissenting report into JSCEM foreign donations report

Lee Rhiannon 10 Mar 2017
The Australian Greens have issued a dissenting report into the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters’ Second interim report on the inquiry in the conduct of the 2016 federal election: Foreign Donations. 

Greens spokesperson for democracy Senator Lee Rhiannon said, “Electoral funding reform is long overdue and the Greens have insisted for a very long time that any reforms need to be far-reaching if they are to count. 

“We welcome the ban on political parties and their associated entities from accepting overseas donations.

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A weak Affordable Housing Finance Corporation won’t do the trick

Lee Rhiannon 10 Mar 2017
The Australian Greens have commented on the Coalition government’s consideration of an Affordable Housing Finance Corporation, which appears to be similar to the policy the Greens took to the last two elections. 
 
Greens housing spokesperson Senator Lee Rhiannon said, “This sounds like a weak version of the Greens’ $2 billion proposal for an Affordable Housing Finance Corporation.
 
“With 657,000 low income households in rental stress according to the ABS, we need thousands of affordable properties, not hundreds.
 
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