Exposed: Minister instructed non-attendance

  Senator Simon Birmingham has accused Environment Minister Peter Garrett of stalling in a bid to avoid scrutiny over the impact of the Rudd Government’s new means test on solar rebates.   It follows confirmation Mr Garrett instructed his Department to pull out of appearing at today’s Senate Committee first hearings into the impact of…

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Peter Garrett still in denial on solar means test

  Peter Garrett continues to be in denial as the only person in Australia who still thinks imposing a means test on the solar panel rebate scheme will somehow help to combat climate change.   Today’s report by the Senate Standing Committee on Environment, Communications and the Arts confirms the negative impact the means test…

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Labor shuts down scrutiny over Broadband

  The Rudd Labor Government has sought to avoid any scrutiny of its moves to establish its ill-defined $4.7 billion National Broadband Network by refusing to answer any questions about the process in Senate Budget Estimates, Senator Simon Birmingham said today.   Communications Minister Stephen Conroy has this morning attempted to shut down all discussion…

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Minister harpooned on Hollway appointment

  A timeline of events linked to the appointment of new whaling envoy Sandy Hollway has become only more puzzling after a Parliamentary committee hearing overnight, Senator Simon Birmingham said today.   Despite reports in early May – denied by the Government at the time – that Mr Hollway had been selected as Australia’s first…

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Last minute Government no-show at solar rebates inquiry

  South Australian Senator Simon Birmingham has labelled the last minute withdrawal by Environment Department officials from today’s hearings into the impact of the new means test on solar rebates as disgraceful and contemptuous.   “Does Minister Garrett really have so much to hide that he needs to pull his officials from attending these hearings…

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Urgent Murray inquiry proceeds

  Senator Simon Birmingham today welcomed the Senate’s decision to refer the dire situation facing the Murray-Darling, particularly the Lower Lakes and Coorong, to an urgent committee inquiry.   The inquiry by the Senate Standing Committee on Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport will report by 30 September, giving it a shorter than usual time…

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Garrett’s green grants going gangrenous

  Two of the Government’s leading climate change policies are looking fatally flawed because of the inaction and indifference of Environment Minister Peter Garrett, Liberal Senator Simon Birmingham said today.   Senate Budget Estimates last night revealed that no progress had been made since the election on implementing the Government’s $300 million Green Loans policy…

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Solar industry to outline means test pain

  A Senate inquiry will today hear evidence in Canberra from solar panel installers about the dramatic impact on the industry of the Rudd Government’s decision to means test the solar panel rebate scheme.   The Senate Standing Committee on Environment, Communications and the Arts today begins its inquiry into the Save Our Solar (Solar…

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Clock ticking on Wong’s contempt of Senate

  The Rudd Government is refusing to take the Australian people into its confidence in relation to the Lower Lakes and Coorong, even defying a Senate order to do so, Senator Simon Birmingham said today.   The Senate yesterday passed a ‘return to order’ for Water Minister Penny Wong to disclose the emergency advice she…

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