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Educational Schedule of the two Acts

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Educational Schedule of the Constitution Act 1889 and the Constitution Acts Amendment Act 1899

 Disclaimer: This schedule has been compiled for public information and has no legal effect.

 THE PARLIAMENT

 General Provisions Relating to Parliament      

Section 2:

C A 1889[15]

The Western Australia Parliament consists of the Queen, Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council.  Parliament is responsible for making laws for the peace, order and good government of Western Australia.  All proposed legislation, once it has been approved by both houses of Parliament, requires the assent of the Governor before it can be enacted[16]. 

Section 3:

C A 1889

The Governor is to determine when sessions of Parliament are to be held.  The Governor has the power to prorogue Parliament and to dissolve the Legislative Assembly for any reason. 

Section 4:

C A 1889

There must be a session of Parliament at least once every 12 months. 

Section 22:

C A 1889

No member of the Legislative Council and Legislative Assembly shall sit or vote in Parliament until they have taken the oath or affirmation of allegiance.  

Section 34:

CA 1889

Both houses of the Parliament must devise standing rules and orders for the conduct of their proceedings. 

Section 35:

CA 1899

The salary of the Speaker and President must be comparable.    The salaries of other officers of the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council must also be equal.  The Chief Clerk of the Legislative Assembly and of the Legislative Council can only be removed from his or her position following a vote of no confidence from the chamber of which he is an officer. 

Section 36:

C A 1889

Each house of Parliament is to determine its own privileges, immunities or powers. These must not exceed those enjoyed by the House of Commons. 

Section 73:

C A 1889

The Parliament can alter and amend any provisions of the Act.  However, any change to the constitution of the Legislative Council or of the Legislative Assembly requires the support of an absolute majority of members of each house of Parliament in both the second and third readings of such a Bill. 

 Any Bill which attempts to alter or abolish the office of the Governor, the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council, popular elections, decrease the number of members of the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council, as well as sections 2, 3, 4, 50, 51 and 73 must be presented to the people at a referendum before any such change can become law.  If the provisions of this section are not upheld, any person entitled to vote at elections is permitted to bring proceedings in the Supreme Court. 

Section 46:

CAAA 1899[17]

The Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council enjoy equal power in respect of all Bills except Money Bills. Money Bills must originate in the Legislative Assembly and not the Legislative Council.  The Legislative Council may not amend Money Bills or any Bill so as to increase the proposed schedule of charges.  However, the Legislative Council can suggest amendments to, and reject a Money Bill if a majority of members in the Legislative Councils so determines.  

Section 51:

CAAA 1899

No legal action can be taken against officials (including presiding officers, Chairman of the Committee and members) while acting under the authority of Parliament. 

[15] Abbreviation for the Constitution Act 1889.

[16] For a brief explanation of how laws are made in the Western Australian Parliament see Appendix 4.

[17] Abbreviation for the Constitution Acts Amendment Act 1899.

 

Provisions Relating to the Legislative Council  

Section 8:

C A 1889

Members of the Legislative Council can resign their seat by letter to the Governor. 

Section 47:

CA 1889

The Legislative Council can proceed to business even if all seats have not been filled at election. 

Section 49:

CA 1889

The Legislative Council shall elect a President who presides at all meetings of the chamber. 

Section 5:

CAAA 1899 

The Legislative Council consists of 34 elected members.

Section 9:

CAAA 1899

Members of the Legislative Council may resign their seat in writing to the President.  If the President is absent from the State, the resignation letter should be forwarded to the Governor. 

Section 11:

CAAA 1899

If the office of the President of the Legislative Council becomes vacant, a new President must be elected at the first meeting of the Council following the creation of the vacancy.  Until a new President has been elected, the Chairman of the Committees will perform these duties.  

Section 12:

CAAA 1899

If the President of the Legislative Council is unable to temporarily perform his or her duties then the Chairman of the Committees will assume responsibility for these tasks. 

Section 13:

CAAA 1899

Following a general election, the President shall continue in office until a new President is elected, unless the President is not re-elected.  The President is not, however, permitted to preside at meetings of the Legislative Council under these conditions.  

Section 14:

CAAA 1899

A quorum of one third of members, excluding the President, is required to conduct all business of the Legislative Council.  The President is to have the casting vote if the ballot is tied, and is otherwise not entitled to vote. 

 Provisions Relating to the Legislative Assembly  

Section 13:

CA 1889

Following a general election, the Legislative Assembly proceeds to business providing no more than 5 seats remain un-filled. 

Section 15:

CA 1889

The Legislative Assembly is to elect a Speaker at the first meeting of the chamber following every general election. 

Section 18:

CAAA 1899 

The Legislative Assembly consists of 57 members.

Section 22:

CAAA 1899

If the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly is unable to temporarily perform his or her duties then the Chair of Committees will assume responsibility for such duties and shall be known as Deputy Speaker.  If it is the case that the Chair of Committees is likewise absent, the Assembly shall elect some other member to perform the duties of the Speaker.

Section 23:

CAAA 1899

Following a general election, the Speaker shall continue in office until a new Speaker is elected, unless the Speaker is not re-elected to the Assembly. The Speaker is not, however, permitted to preside over meetings of the Legislative Assembly under these conditions. 

Section 24:

CAAA 1899

A quorum of one third of members, excluding the Speaker, is required to undertake all business of the Legislative Assembly.  The Speaker is to have the casting vote if the ballot is tied, although is otherwise not entitled to vote. 

Section 25:

CAAA 1899

Members of the Legislative Assembly may resign their seat in writing to the Speaker.  If the Speaker is absent from the State, the resignation letter should be forwarded to the Governor. 

Section 40:

CAAA 1899

The election of a member who is ineligible for membership to either the Legislative Assembly or the Legislative Council does not invalidate proceedings of Parliament.

 

ELECTORAL MATTERS

 

General Provisions Relating to Electoral Matters  

Section 41:

CA 1889

Electoral lists are to be drawn up and made available for public inspection. 

Section 32:

CAAA 1899

An elected member will be disqualified from assuming his or her seat in either house of Parliament if that person is an undischarged bankrupt or has been convicted of treason or a felony

Section 33:

CAAA 1899

A Minister is not disqualified from membership to Parliament on the basis he or she holds an office of profit under the Crown. 

Section 34:

CAAA 1899

A person is disqualified from membership to Parliament if they are an employee of the Crown under Part I, Schedule V of this Act, a member of any Parliament in Australia, or is presently a member of the other house of Parliament [i.e. a person cannot be a member of both chambers simultaneously].  

Section 35:

CAAA 1899

The election of a person who is ineligible for membership to either house of Parliament is void or invalidated. 

Section 36:

CAAA 1899

Any person who is employed by any Government in Australia and is elected to either house of Parliament must resign their position or office before they can take their seat in Parliament. The Governor can exempt certain persons from the operation of this section on the recommendation of Parliament. 

Section 37:

CAAA 1899

Any person elected to the Parliament who is an employee of the Crown under Part I, II and III of Schedule V of this Act must resign from their position on winning a seat in Parliament. The only exception to this rule is Ministers and Parliamentary Secretaries. 

Section 38:

CAAA 1899

A member of Parliament is required to resign their seat if, following his or her election, they cease to be eligible (or are disqualified) from membership to Parliament under section 7, 20, 32 and 34; is a person to whom sections 36 and 37 apply; derive benefit from any laws relating to bankruptcy; become of unsound mind; owes allegiance to a foreign power and is absent from one full session of Parliament without permission. 

Section 39:

CAAA 1899

Where a person has, or it has been alleged that he or she has, held an office under Part I, II and III of Schedule V or under section 36 of this Act, and it appears that the person in question no longer holds this position then the relevant legislature may pass a resolution that this be disregarded. 

Section 41:

CAAA 1899

Any person entitled to vote at elections of the Legislative Assembly is permitted to challenge the election of a member in the Supreme Court. 

Section 48:

CAAA 1899

The maintenance of electoral rolls is the responsibility of the Electoral Registrars. 

Provisions Relating to Electoral Matters – The Legislative Council  

Section 6:

CAAA 1899

For the purpose of elections of the Legislative Council, the State is to be divided into 6 specified electoral regions.  Two of the regions are to return 7 members apiece while four districts elect 5 members.[18] 

Section 7:

CAAA 1899

Any person who has resided in the State for one year, is over the age of 18 years, does not suffer from any legal incapacity, and is entitled to vote at elections of the Legislative Assembly is qualified to stand for elections of the Legislative Council. 

Section 8:

CAAA 1899

Members of the Legislative Council are to serve a 4-year term beginning on May 22 following the general election. 

Section 10:

CAAA 1899

A member filling a casual vacancy in the Legislative Council is entitled to hold the seat for the un-expired portion of the term the previous member was entitled to serve.  

Section 15:

CAAA 1899

Qualifications and disqualifications for electors to vote in Selections of the Legislative Council are set down in sections 18 and 17 of the Electoral Act 1907.  

[18] See Proportional Representation listed in the glossary.

Provisions Relating to Electoral Matters – The Legislative Assembly  

Section 12:

CA 1889

The Governor is to issue writs for the general election of the Legislative Assembly. 

Section 19:

CAAA 1899

For elections of the Legislative Assembly, the State shall be divided into 57 electoral districts, each returning one member[19]. 

Section 20:

CAAA 1899

Any person who has resided in the State for one year, is over the age of 18 years, does not suffer from any legal incapacity and is entitled to vote at elections of the Legislative Assembly, is qualified to stand for elections of the Legislative Assembly. 

Section 21:

CAAA 1899

The Legislative Assembly is to operate for 4 years from the day of its first meeting following general election unless prorogued or dissolved earlier by the Governor.   

[19] See Alternative Vote listed in the glossary.

  

THE EXECUTIVE

Section 50:

CA 1889

The Governor is appointed (and dismissed) by the Queen and is her representative in Western Australia. 

Section 51:

CA 1889

The Governor has a duty to act on the instructions of the Queen.[20] 

Section 74:

CA 1889

The Governor is to appoint all public officers (public servants and other officials) on the advice of the government of the day.  However, the appointment of Ministers is vested exclusively in the Governor.[21]  

Section 42:

CAAA 1899

The Governor may, on the recommendation of both houses of Parliament, amend Schedule V of this Act. 

Section 43:

CAAA 1899

There can be a maximum of 17 government Ministers appointed by the Governor on the advice of the government of the day.  At least one Minister must be a member of the Legislative Council.[22] 

Section 44:

CAAA 1899

A government Minister in charge of more than one Ministry is only permitted to receive one salary.

Section 44A:

CAAA 1899

The Governor, acting on the advice of the government of the day, may appoint one or more Parliamentary Secretaries to assist Ministers.  If the Premier approves, Parliamentary Secretaries may be entitled to a special allowance as compensation for performing additional duties. 

[20]The operation of this section and others is affected by the existence of the Australia Acts 1986 (Cwlth) (UK).  The Australia Acts specify that the Queen (and by extension the Governor) must exercise her powers on the advice of the Premier (see Australia Acts 1986  section 7 (4)). This codifies the longstanding convention that the Queen is obliged to act on the advice of Government of the day.  Moreover, the Australia Acts1986 prevent the Queen from exercising many of her powers unless she is present physically in the State.  The exception to this is the power to appoint and terminate the commission of the Governor (see Australia Acts 1986 section 7(3)).

[21] The operation of this section is affected by the terms set down in section 43 of the Constitution Act Amendment Act 1899 which stipulate that the appointment of Ministers by the Governor must be undertaken on the advice of the Executive Council.

[22 It is interesting to note that the Constitution does not specify that all government Ministers must be elected members of Parliament.  This is unlike the requirements set down in the Federal Constitution which permit non-elected persons to act as Ministers for a period of 3 months (see Federal Constitution, section 64).

THE JUDICIARY AND OTHER LEGAL MATTERS  

Section 54:

CA 1889

The commission of a Judge is to continue during his or her good behaviour.[23]  

Section 55:

CA 1889

The commission of a Judge can be terminated by the Crown on the request of Parliament. 

Section 57:

CA 1889

All laws which existed prior to the commencement of this Act remain in force unless they are repugnant to this Act. 

Section 58:

CA 1889

The legal and political apparatus of the colony shall continue unless abolished or altered by this Act, now or in the future

Section 49:

CAAA 1899

A person who seeks to recover any monies as a result of the operation of this Act has 3 months to seek redress from the date at which the alleged breach occurred. 

Section 50:

CAAA 1899

A person seeking monies as a result of any breach or violation of this Act must be able to provide $200 as security to the Court before any further action can proceed. 

[23] This section of the Constitution is affected by the operation of the Judges Retirement Act 1973 which makes it compulsory for judges to retire at 70 years of age.

LOCAL GOVERNMENT  

Section 52:

CA 1889

Establishes local governing bodies which enjoy those powers conferred to it by Parliament. 

Section 53:

CA 1889

Provides for savings clause which ensures that the operation of s. 52 of the Constitution Act 1889 does not affect other laws or administrative arrangements. 

 FINANCES AND EXPENDITURE

Section 64:

CA 1889

All monies raised by or credited to the colony over which the Parliament has power to spend shall form Consolidated Fund. 

Section 65:

CA 1889

The Consolidated Fund is to be permanently charged with all the expenses associated with the collection of public monies. The process of spending the Consolidated Fund will be subject to regular auditing. 

Section 68:

CA 1889

No public monies shall be spent without a warrant from the Governor addressed to the Treasurer. 

Section 71:

CA 1889 

Government Ministers are paid out of the Consolidated Fund.

Section 72:

CA 1889

The expenditure of monies in the Consolidated Fund must be approved by Parliament. 

 MISCELLANEOUS

Preamble:

CA 1889 

The Constitution of Western Australian is an Act of the British Imperial Parliament.

Preamble:

CAAA 1899 

An Act to amend the Constitution Act 1889

Section 75:

CA 1889 

Interpretation and definitions relevant to this Act.

Section 3:

CAAA 1899

Interpretation and definitions relevant to this Act. 

Section 31:

CAAA 1899

Interpretations relevant for succeeding provisions of Part I of the Constitution Acts Amendment Act 1899. 

Section 78:

CA 1889

Short title of the Act.

 

Section 1

CAAA 1889

Short title of the Act

 

SECTIONS OF AN HISTORICAL AND TRANSITIONAL NATURE  

Section 5:

CA 1889

Parliament must be summoned within six months of the commencement of the Constitution Act 1899.  

Section 6:

CA 1889

The Governor is to appoint 15 members to the (non-elective) Legislative Council. 

Section 7:

CA 1889

Members appointed to the Legislative Council are to enjoy tenure of their seat until the colony meets the requirements for an elective Legislative Council. 

Section 9:  

CA 1889

The Governor is to appoint a President to the (non-elective) Legislative Council who may take part in debate.  The Governor also has the power to remove appointments to the Legislative Council. 

Section 38:

CA 1889      

The conduct of elections for the Legislative Assembly shall be the same as those previously used to elect members to the Legislative Council.  

Section 42:

CA 1889

Within six months of the first session of the Legislative Council, CA 1889 or when the population of the colony has reached 60,000 people, excluding Aboriginal natives, there shall be an elective Legislative Council.  The Governor is to have the power to delay or postpone this process for no more than six months, once the relevant criteria have been fulfilled. 

Section 43:

CA 1889

Invalidates the first paragraph of section 6 and sections 8, 9 and 30 of this Act once the criteria for an elective Legislative Council has been met. 

Section 46:

CA 1889

Once the conditions of elective Legislative Council have been met, the Governor shall issue writs for a general election of the Legislative Council.  

Section 59:

CA 1889

The colony can impose custom duties on imported goods. However, the imposition of duties must be uniform unless authorised by the British Imperial Parliament. 

Section 60:

CA 1889

The imposition of excise is not to be levied on items for             supplies for the Governor or his troops.  Also, the colony must not impose or enforce any duties which are inconsistent with any treaties signed by the Crown with a foreign power[24]. 

Section 61:

CA 1889

The Crown may sub-divide any part of the territory of Western Australia into a separate colony or colonies.  This also includes the power to re-unite any part of the colony that has been annexed previously by the Crown.[25] 

Section 62:

CA 1889

If separation of any part of the colony occurs, this Act will continue to apply to the remaining portion of the colony. 

Section 63:

CA 1889

The Government of Western Australia remains liable for any public debt accrued by the new colony prior to its separation. 

Section 76:

CA 1889

This Act is to apply only when other Acts, which are repugnant to this Act, have been repealed by the British Imperial Parliament. 

Section 77:

CA 1889

This Act shall be proclaimed within three months of having received Royal Assent.

Section 2:  

CAAA 1899   

Repeals various Acts mentioned in Schedule 1 of the Constitution Act Amendment Act 1899 

Section 51:

CAAA 1899

The Constitutional Act Amendments Act shall be proclaimed once Royal Assent has been given and the Act formally proclaimed.  

Section 8A:

CAAA 1899  

This section has been omitted from the text because it is no longer operative. 

[24]Although the Western Australian Parliament is no longer constrained by the operation of section 59 and 60 of this Act, nonetheless it is not permitted to impose either custom or excise duty.  The operation of the Federal Constitution vests the power to raise custom and excise duty exclusively in the hands of the Federal Parliament (see Federal Constitution, Section 90).

[25] It is still possible to annex any part of the State of Western Australia from the principal.  However, this can only occur with the consent of the Western Australia Parliament and the approval of a majority of electors in the State (see Federal Constitution, Section 123 and 124).

SCHEDULES  

Schedule D:

CA 1889

Compensation for Government Ministers.  This schedule is redundant. 

Schedule E:

CA 1889

Oath and Affirmation. 

Schedule I:

CAAA 1899

Enactments repealed on the commencement of this Act.

Schedule V:

CAAA 1899

List of government agencies, committees, advisory councils, boards and other public officers.