Dec 18, 2007

Federal Parliament to sit five days per week

Federal Parliament will sit five days a week under the Rudd Government.

It will be the first time since federation that the Federal Parliament is scheduled to regularly sit five days per week.

The Parliament will sit more days in 2008 than at any time under the Howard Government, allowing for greater accountability and scrutiny.

The Parliament will sit for 82 days in 2008, which will include sittings from Monday to Friday on most sitting weeks.

Under the Howard Government, on average the Parliament sat for 67 days per year.

More sitting days not only improves accountability, it also means the Parliament better structures the consideration of legislation and minimises the need for all-night sittings where critical decisions are made late into the night.

The new Order of Business will add three hours and twenty five minutes of Government business per week whilst improving the timetable by bring forward the adjournment debate on Monday and Tuesday to 8:30pm.

An additional one hour and thirty five minutes is added to Private Members Business, thereby enabling members to raise issues of concern to their electorates on Fridays.

Backbenchers will have more opportunities to speak in the House.

The Rudd Government is committed to Parliamentary reform to ensure greater accountability and the Parliamentary timetable is a step in the right direction.

Click here for the 2008 Parliamentary Sitting Pattern.

Click here for the 2008 Order of Business.