In Parliament

Motion - Debate Be Adjourned



Tuesday, 30 May 2023.

Mr NEWBURY (Brighton) (12:46):

I move:

That debate be adjourned.

Never in 160 years in this place has the Opposition been denied an opportunity for a Budget in Reply.

In 160 years, the Opposition has never been denied the opportunity for a Budget in Reply.

The Government has confirmed to me that the Opposition would not be provided a 30-minute budget in reply without interruption.

In 160 years, we have never seen a Government deny an Opposition the right to an uninterrupted 30-minute reply to the budget. What have we seen today?

We have seen a Government that is trying to ram through new taxes through this place without providing them to Victorians to consider – taxes on rental properties, taxes on schools and taxes on kids.

Now we have a government that is proposing to deny the Opposition a Budget in Reply.

We have a Parliament going into a lunch break in just over 10 minutes, and the Government advised the Opposition that the Opposition could have 10 minutes for a Budget in reply. What a disgrace. What an absolute disgrace – a 10-minute reply to the Budget.

Every single Member on that side of the place should be ashamed of themselves, absolutely ashamed. No Member in 160 years has seen a Parliamentary tactic of this nature. 160 years – that should tell every Member of this place something.

I would say to every Victorian and every media outlet, who I know are watching: the Government is denying the Opposition the opportunity for a Budget in Reply.

I move that the debate be adjourned because the Opposition should not be denied the right to an uninterrupted reply to the Budget.

It is essential that the opposition be given a right to represent their communities, to represent them on the issues that are contained in this Budget and to talk about the historic levels of debt in this Budget and the punitive taxes that are going to hurt segments of the community in ways that we have never seen before. The Opposition should be entitled to that right. They should be entitled to give a full reply to the Budget. I have never seen this before. I know I am only a second-term member, but I have never seen this before. I know that the father of the place has never seen this before.

No-one has ever seen an Opposition denied the right to a reply to the Budget. Never, ever has anybody seen in it 160 years – denied the right to a Budget in reply.

The government advised me that the Shadow Treasurer would be given 10 minutes before lunch – take it, take it: 10 minutes before lunch.

That is what you get, 10 minutes before lunch – outrageous, absolutely outrageous. Ten minutes before lunch – I mean, what is this?

This Parliament has been turned into a chaotic joke. This is a joke. How dare the Government not allow Victorians time to consider Bills, consider taxes that are being imposed upon them, or give the opportunity for the Opposition to reply to the Budget. Is that where we are in this Parliament, that the Government is refusing to give the Opposition time to reply to a Budget – something that nobody has done in 160 years? No wonder the media are reporting that the Government is in chaos. No wonder the media is reporting it – no wonder. Victorians know it; Victorians have seen it. Victorians now know it. The least this Government can do is allow the opportunity for the Opposition to reply to the Budget.

We sat here and listened to the Treasurer – a Treasurer who did not talk about his school taxes in his budget, did he? He kept that hidden, didn’t he? We sat here and gave him the courtesy, as we should, of hearing his 30-minute speech on the budget, and the least the government could do is offer the same opportunity to the Opposition.