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Questions unanswered Part II

A selection of some of the more interesting unanswered questions in the House of Representatives which have been outstanding for more than twelve months:

7 March 2005
644. MR M. J. FERGUSON: To ask the Prime Minister —
(1) Further to the answer to question No. 50 (Hansard, 16 February 2005, page 245) concerning the provision of wines and liquor for Kirribilli House and the Lodge, for each year since Mr Bourne was
appointed (a) on what contractual basis has he been engaged and (b) what has been the cost to the Department.
(2) What is the policy on the cellaring of wines.
(3) What is the volume of alcoholic beverages held for (a) Kirribilli House and (b) the Lodge and what is its estimated value.

11 May 2005
1253. MR MELHAM: To ask the Prime Minister—
(1) What sum was spent by the Commonwealth Government on (a) travel, (b) accommodation, (c) security, and (d) all other expenses for his visits to (i) Santiago, Chile, to attend thannual Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation leaders’ meeting on 18 November 2004, (ii) Vientiane, Laos, to attend the ASEAN-Australia and New Zealand Leaders’ Summit on 30 November 2004, (iii) the World
Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, from 28 to 30 January 2005, Singapore on 1 to 2 February 2005 and Banda Aceh, Indonesia on 2 February 2005, (iv) New Zealand from 19 to 21 February 2005, and (v) China, Japan, Turkey and Greece from 18 to 29 April 2005.
(2) Who accompanied him on each journey.

5 September 2005
2230. MR K. J. THOMSON: To ask the Prime Minister—
(1) Is he aware that Senator Ross Lightfoot advised four members of the Aziz family, an Iraqi family involved in Kurdistan’s oil industry, to apply for political asylum as a way of staying in Australia after their visa had expired; if so, can he say whether this advice was correct in the circumstances.
(2) Is he aware that Senator Lightfoot’s wife and staff member, Ms Anne Fergusson-Stewart, went to Dubai to assist Mr Aziz’s wife to apply for another 12 month visa after they had left Australia after their initial visa expired.
(3) Is he aware that Senator Lightfoot has not disclosed who paid for the travel and accommodation costs incurred by his wife when she went to Dubai.
(4) Can he say whether Senator Lightfoot’s entry on the Register of Pecuniary Interests is accurate and up-to-date.
(5) Has he discussed this matter with Senator Lightfoot.

6 September 2005
MR HAYES: To ask the Ministers listed below (questions Nos. 2302 - 2320)—
(1) What sum did the Minister’s department spend on procuring goods and services from private organisations for the financial year (a) 2000-2001, (b) 2001-2002, (c) 2002-2003, (d) 2003-2004 and (e) 2004-2005.
(2) What criteria does an organisation have to meet to be able to supply the Minister’s department.
(3) In respect of procurement contracts awarded to private organisations, does the Minister’s department require certain industrial relations criteria to be met; if so, do the criteria include the requirement to offer employees Australian Workplace Agreements; if so why.

[Questions 2302 to 2320 represent the above question being put to nineteen ministers, including the Prime Minister. None of the nineteen have responded.]

8 December 2005
MR RUDD: To ask the Ministers listed below (questions Nos. 2892 - 2894) — Did he meet with officials from the
Australian Wheat Board on or around 22 August 2005; if so, what was the purpose of the meeting.

[Q.2893 to Alexander Downer and Q.2894 to Mark Vaile was replied to on 27 February 2006, both with the one sentence "We had meetings with AWB officials at various times." Q.2892 to John Howard has not received a response.]

14 September 2006

4348. MS K. M. ELLIS: To ask the Treasurer—
(1) What evaluation has he made of the impact of the recent fee increases by California-based online trading site eBay on the 17,500 Australian small businesses who use e-Bay store trading as their primary sales channel and the additional 35,000 small businesses who use eBay as their secondary sales channel.
(2) Can he say whether eBay's decision to raise fees, and reduce store visibility (a) was necessary to protect eBay’s legitimate business interest in Australia, (b) was made after adequate negotiation with eBay’s store-holders, (c) constitutes a fair tactic by eBay to increase overall profits and (d) was
executed in a conscionable manner, with full consideration given to the disparity in bargaining power.
(3) Is he aware that over 800 Australian small business who were trading using eBay ‘stores’ have reportedly closed down since the implementation of eBay’s new fee structure.
(4) Has the Government sought legal opinion as to whether eBay’s actions comply with current Australian trade practices legislation, in particular with section 51AC of the Trade Practices Act 1974.
(5) Will the Government take steps to safeguard Australian small businesses from similar excessive fee increases in the future.

MR K. J. THOMSON: To ask the Ministers listed below (questions Nos. 4526 - 4544)—In respect of any change to the logo of the department and agencies that report to the Minister, (a) when was the most recent change, (b) how many such changes have taken place in the past five years, (c) what was the reason for the change, and (d) what was the total cost of the change, including (i) signage, (ii) stationery, (iii) associated advertising and (iv) website design.

[Four of the nineteen ministers asked this question have replied. The Prime Minister, who insisted on a bland common branding for all government agencies in 2001, is among the fifteen who have not replied.]