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Report

Same-sex couples by Commonwealth Electoral Division

On 27 May 2004 the Attorney-General introduced legislation to amend the Marriage Act 1961 to, inter alia, define 'marriage' as the union of a man and a woman and to prevent same-sex couples from adopting children from overseas. The proposed amendments and the ensuing debate...
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Public versus private? An overview of the debate on private health insurance and pressure on public hospitals

The 7.96 per cent average increase in private health insurance premiums for 2005 marks the third year in a row in which private health premiums have increased on average by more than 7 per cent. Federal Health Minister Tony Abbott's announcement of the increases was...
Report

Liberalisation of international passenger airline services

Australia’s international aviation industry is heavily regulated. Whether or to what extent passenger airline services should be further liberalised is again being debated, a particular focus being whether more airlines should be allowed to carry passengers between Australia and the United States. Richard Webb provides...
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Spy versus spy: government control of sensitive information

From June to September 2004, government officials ‘cleansed’ computers which held copies of an original manuscript by former Office of National Assessments analyst Andrew Wilkie. Wilkie had agreed with the government’s instruction to remove some passages from the manuscript of the book Axis of Deceit...
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Australia's corporate regulators - the ACCC, ASIC and APRA

In the 1990s, a major development in Australian public administration was the creation of specialised statutory agencies responsible for financial regulation: the Australian Consumer and Competition Commission, the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, and the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority. The responsibilities, resources and public profiles...
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Election 2006: Canada changes government

The 46-year-old Stephen Harper is Canada’s 22nd Prime Minister. The new government is the tenth minority government elected since 1925, the average duration of which has been one year, five months and 22 days. It seems unlikely that the new government will run full term...
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Electoral division rankings: Census 2006 first release

This paper provides an analysis by Commonwealth electoral division of socio-demographic data from the first release of the 2006 Census of Population and Housing. The electoral boundaries used in this paper are those applicable to the next federal election.
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Anti-terrorism bill 2005

In this Parliamentary Library Bills Digest, Sue Harris Rimmer summarises the main provisions of the government's legislation and points to a number of issues parliament may wish to consider if amendments to the bill are under consideration.
Report

The Kyoto Protocol’s Clean Development Mechanism

The Clean Development Mechanism is an avenue for industrialised countries to undertake carbon abatement projects in developing countries. This Background Note provides information on the CDM and its associated emissions credits. The mechanism is an element of the Kyoto Protocol to the United Nations Framework...
Report

Compulsory voting in Australian national elections

Compulsory voting has been part of Australia's national elections since 1924. Renewed Liberal Party interest and a parliamentary committee recommendation that voluntary voting be the subject of future investigation suggest that this may well be an important issue at the next election. Scott Bennett describes...