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Archives for November 2013

Education Ministers Speak Out On Pyne’s School Funding Announcement

Education Minister Christopher Pyne’s state counterparts have criticised Pyne’s decision to pull out of the Gillard government’s Gonski school funding agreements.

The ministers spoke to the media after meeting with Pyne today. They included NSW minister Adrian Piccoli who has led the criticism of Pyne. The Australian Education Union’s Angelos Gavrielatos and parents’ organisations also weighed in on the announcement. [Read more…]


Greens And Palmer Back GrainCorp Decision; ALP Says Hockey Acts In The Nationals Interest

Treasurer Joe Hockey’s decision to block the ADM takeover of GrainCorp has met with approval from the Greens and Clive Palmer but has been criticised by the ALP as an attack on foreign investment and a capitulation to The Nationals.

Shadow Treasurer Chris Bowen said Hockey had failed his first big test of credibility as Treasurer. He said Hockey had acted not in the national interest but in the interests of The Nationals. “Hockey can be bullied afterall,” Bowen said. [Read more…]


Treasurer Joe Hockey Blocks ADM Takeover Of GrainCorp

The Treasurer, Joe Hockey, has blocked the takeover of GrainCorp by the American company Archer Daniels Midland.

Hockey

Hockey used the power given to him alone as Treasurer to reject the foreign investment application. ADM was seeking to increase its current shareholding of 19.85% to 100%. Hockey said he would permit ADM to hold 24.9%. [Read more…]


Final Two-Party Figures: Coalition Won 2013 Election With 3.61% Swing

Final figures published by the Australian Electoral Commission show that the Coalition won the 2013 federal election with a 3.61% swing.

The Liberal-Nationals coalition polled 53.49% of the national two-party-preferred vote. The ALP received 46.51%.

Every state and territory recorded a swing against the ALP. The largest swing was 9.39% in Tasmania. The smallest was 1.09% in the Northern Territory.

The Coalition did best in Western Australia, where it polled 58.28%, Queensland, where it polled 56.98% and New South Wales, where it polled 54.35%.

The Coalition had a net gain of 17 seats. It picked up 10 seats in NSW and 3 in Tasmania. It had a net gain of 2 in Victoria and 1 each in Queensland and South Australia. It lost one seat to the Palmer United Party’s Clive Palmer and one to Cathy McGowan, an independent.

The ALP received a majority of the two-party-preferred vote in just two states: Tasmania, where it polled 51.23% and Victoria, where it polled 50.20%. Its highest vote was 59.91% in the ACT. [Read more…]


AEC Finalises $58 Million Of Election Funding To Candidates In Federal Election

The Australian Electoral Commission has made payments to political parties and candidates totalling $58,076,456.01, following the 2013 federal election.

Election funding is provided to parties and candidates polling at least 4% of the primary vote in House and Senate elections. Each first preference vote was worth 248.800 cents.

The payment is indexed. At the 2010 election, each vote was worth 231.191 cents and a total of $53,163,385 was paid to candidates. [Read more…]


Election Funding Payments: 2013 Federal Election

This table shows the election funding payments made to political parties and candidates following the 2013 federal election.

A candidate or Senate group needs four per cent of the primary vote to be eligible for election funding. The amount is calculated by multiplying the number of votes obtained by the current funding rate.

The funding rate for the 2013 election was 248.000 cents per House of Representatives and Senate vote.

Just over $58 million was distributed to parties and candidates. [Read more…]


Scathing UNHCR Report On Conditions On Nauru

The United Nations Refugee Agency has produced a scathing report on conditions at the Regional Processing Centre on Nauru.

The report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees said “the current policies, conditions and operational approaches” on Nauru “do not comply with international standards”. [Read more…]


Pyne Abandons Gonski School Funding Agreements; New Arrangements After 2014

The Minister for Education, Christopher Pyne, has confirmed that the government will honour school funding commitments of the previous government for 2014 but will implement a new funding model after that.

Pyne

Pyne was quizzed about the government’s abandonment of its commitment to the previous Labor government’s school funding agreements at a press conference today. [Read more…]


Governor-General Quentin Bryce Calls For A Republic And Same-Sex Marriage

The Governor-General, Quentin Bryce, has called for an Australian republic and same-sex marriage in the last of her Boyer Lectures, delivered just four months before she retires from the Vice-Regal role.

Bryce

Bryce’s remarks came at the end of a speech titled “Advance Australia Fair”. She concluded by imagining a nation of care and equality, “where people are free to love and marry whom they choose and where, perhaps, my friends, one day, one young girl or boy may even grow up to be our nation’s first head of state”. [Read more…]


Abbott Announces Panel To Examine Democratisation Of NSW Liberals

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has announced the formation of an Expert Panel to consider reform of the NSW Liberal Party.

The announcement came during Abbott’s address to the NSW Liberal Party State Council in Sydney today.

“I love this party,” Abbott told the gathering. He said the Expert Panel would examine preselection reform and democratisation of the party.

The reform process will be led by former prime minister John Howard. He will be assisted by one of his former ministers, David Kemp, the former president of the NSW division, Chris McDiven, and the longtime member for Berowra, Philip Ruddock.

Concern over the preselection process and factionalism within the NSW division has grown in recent years. The party’s failure to win more seats in NSW cost it government in 2010. The candidacy of Jaymes Diaz cost the party the seat of Greenway at this year’s election.

Transcript of Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s Address to the NSW Liberal Party State Council in Sydney.

Well, what a fantastic day to be together as part of our extended Liberal family. It is an extraordinary honour to be with you this morning. It is an extraordinary honour to be with you this morning as your Prime Minister.

I am under no illusions, I know that the only reason that we have a new Government in Canberra, the only reason that I am Prime Minister is because I am the product of this great Party. [Read more…]