Lobbying Bill Progresses

by Desk Editor on Wednesday, July 25, 2012 — 11:48 PM

The Lobbying Disclosure Bill was sent to select committee for consideration despite general agreement it was flawed.

The bill in the name of Green MP Holly Walker seeks to bring transparency and public disclosure around lobbying directed at MPs and their staff.

The bill was sent to the Government Administration Committee on a voice vote despite all parties expressing misgivings.

Walker and other MPs said there were problems around the definition of lobbying and lobbyists and it could be made too broad or too narrow.

The Attorney General has warned the bill as drafted could have a chilling effect on communication between MPs and the wider public.

All agreed the bill was well intended but would need work to pass into law.

After the vote the Greens sought leave for the House to rise just before 10pm as their co-leader Russel Norman was not present to deal with next bill in his name (The Overseas Investment (Restriction on Foreign Ownership of Land) Amendment Bill).

Because an MP objected Green MP Steffan Browning was forced to begin delivering the speech before the House rose at 10pm.

It will resume tomorrow at 9am.
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