parliamentary Glossary E-G
1. An economy is the total activities involved in the production, exchange and consumption of goods and services within a nation or confined area. The running of the national economy is the main concern of the Treasurer.
2. An economy is the use and management of the resources of a community, with a view to increasing productivity and avoiding waste.
An election is when a person or government is chosen by voting. A federal election is held at least once every three years for membership of Australia’s federal Parliament.
An elector is a person who votes or is eligible to vote. All Australian citizens aged 18 years and over who are enrolled to vote are electors.
An electoral roll is a list naming all the people who are entitled to vote. All Australian citizens aged 18 years and over are required to place their name on the electoral roll.
1. An electorate is a geographical area represented by a member of parliament. The federal member was very keen to promote safe driving and safe roads in her electorate.
2. An electorate is all the people who live in an area represented by a member of parliament. The member represents the interests of his or her electorate in federal Parliament.
An electorate office is where members work when parliament is not meeting in Canberra. The office is located within the electorate area. The member met a group of constituents in her electorate office.
Estimates committees are legislative and general purpose standing committees of the Senate which meet during set periods of the year, to scrutinise proposed spending, actions and decisions by executive government. During the estimates committee several senators questioned the departmental secretary about her department’s expenditure over the last six months.
Exclusive power is the power that only the federal Parliament has, by the Australian Constitution, to exclusively make laws in certain areas for the whole country. State parliaments may not legislate in these areas. The federal Parliament has exclusive power to make defence and communication laws.
(see also ministry)
- The Executive is the subset of government which carries out or administers law.
- The Executive includes the Governor-General and ministers from the governing party who make policy and control government departments, and who are answerable to the Parliament for the way they run the government. The Executive is responsible for determining when and where the Australian defence force goes into operation.
Executive power is the power to administer the law, and one of the three powers under the Constitution, the others being legislative power (exercised by the Parliament) and judicial power (exercised by the High Court of Australia and other courts). The minister used executive power to set up new offices with the task of administering the new law.
Expenditure is the act of spending or the amount spent. Expenditure on roads increased last year.
An explanatory memorandum is a paper which explains the purpose and details of bills or regulations, usually in a simple and less technical way. An explanatory memorandum was handed out with each copy of the bill so that the bill could be more easily understood.
Federal means having to do with the Parliament of Australia and/or Australian Government rather than state parliaments and/or state governments. The federal Parliament creates laws that apply to the whole country.
A federal election is the voting process for all the seats in the House of Representatives and usually half the seats of each state, in the Senate. The federal election led to a change of government and a new Prime Minister of Australia.
The Federal Executive Council is the council of ministers which advises the Governor-General and gives legal form to Cabinet decisions. The Federal Executive Council met to consider the new diplomatic appointment.
A federal member is a member of parliament who represents a federal electorate in the House of Representatives. The federal member was happy to support the thriving local community of daffodil growers.
(see also Parliament of Australia, the Parliament)
The federal Parliament refers to the national Parliament (as distinct from state parliaments). The federal Parliament consists of the elected members of the House of Representatives and the Senate, and the Queen. The federal parliament is also known as the Parliament of Australia, the Australian Parliament, the Parliament and the Commonwealth Parliament of Australia. The federal Parliament meets at Parliament House in Canberra.
Federalism is a system of government in which powers and responsibilities are divided between a federal government and regional or state governments. Federalism operates throughout Australia since the responsibility to govern is shared between the Commonwealth and the states.
To filibuster is to use long speeches or other tactics in parliament deliberately to delay proceedings. The filibuster tactic left the member hoarse and tired.
The first reading is the first of three principal stages that mark the passage of a bill to an Act, when the Clerk reads the long title of the bill to the chamber for the first time. A bill passes through the first reading stage in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
The first speech (formerly known as the maiden speech) is the first formal speech in parliament by a newly elected member or senator, during which they are traditionally heard without interruption. The member was heard without interruption as she delivered her maiden speech.
Foreign affairs refers to a country’s relations with other countries. Australia has a Minister for Foreign Affairs.
Freedom of information is the principle that citizens should have the right to see most government reports and papers, particularly those that relate to their personal affairs. The media obtained sensitive information by using their right to freedom of information.
A free vote is a vote in parliament in which members or senators are free to vote according to their own judgment or belief and not necessarily according to the guidelines, policies or decisions of their political party. The debate prior to the free vote attracted a lot of media attention.
A frontbencher is a member of parliament who is a minister or a shadow minister. Frontbenchers sit on the front bench in each chamber. The frontbencher rose to answer a question from an opposition backbencher.
A gag is a procedure for closing a discussion in either the House of Representatives or the Senate. It is also known as a closure motion, in which a senator or member may move that a vote be taken to decide a question under consideration immediately, without further debate. Members of the minor parties were annoyed when a gag prevented them from delivering their speeches.
Governance is the act of governing a country and the exercise of authority. In Australia federal governance is shared between three authorities: the Parliament of Australia, the Australian Government and the High Court of Australia.
- The government is the party or coalition of parties that wins the most seats in the House of Representatives. The government majority of 20 seats meant that the bill easily passed the House.
- Government means to rule, to administer or to control. Government is meant to be of the people, by the people, for the people.
- Government is the form or system of rule by which a country or state is governed. Australia’s system of government is a representative democracy.
The executive or administrative body of a nation or state. He was on a pension administered by the government.
A government backbencher is a member of parliament who belongs to the party or coalition of parties that is in government but who is not a minister. Government backbenchers are both members and senators. The government backbencher gave firm support to the minister’s proposal.
Government business is the business of the House of Representatives or the Senate, which is introduced by a minister. If a minister introduces a bill to the house, it is listed in the government business section of the Notice Paper.
A government department is a group of public servants organised to administer a particular area of government activity, under the control of a minister. A representative of the government department responsible for the environment presented information to a Senate committee.
The Governor-General is the representative of the Queen and the nominal head of national government in Australia. The former Governor-General made a speech on behalf of all Australians at the opening ceremony of the Sydney Olympic Games.
The grievance debate is a weekly debate in the House of Representatives when any member may speak on any matter of concern. During a grievance debate, a member condemned the closure of a Medicare office in her electorate.
A guillotine is a procedure to limit discussion on a bill or bills, when the Senate can agree that a matter is urgent and set a timeframe for completing the remaining stages. The guillotine placed on the debate of the airports bill prevented the independent senator from making his speech to the chamber.