Senate votes down control over unions, providing possible double dissolution trigger

Senate votes down control over unions, providing possible double dissolution trigger

The Senate has set up another trigger for a double dissolution election, after again rejecting a bill for greater oversight of unions.

The legislation proposes to set up a Registered Organisations Commission to regulate unions, a move Labor opposes.

Under the law, the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Amendment Bill would impose the same disclosure and transparency obligations that company directors follow on union officials.

Employment Minister Eric Abetz told the Senate unions and companies should be held to the same standard.

“Why should a corrupt union official who has ripped off hundreds of thousands of dollars from a union only be liable for a fine of $10,800, when for the same corrupt conduct a company director would be liable for five years’ imprisonment or a fine for $360,000 for ripping off shareholders?” he said.

But the bill was knocked back 34 votes to 33.

It was the second time the legislation has been voted down, making it a possible double dissolution election trigger.

But Assistant Treasurer Josh Frydenberg has denied suggestion the government is considering going to an early election.

About author

Libby Dreyer
Libby Dreyer 1729 posts

Libby has worked as a Senior Journalist at National Radio News since February 2011. She graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Canberra in December 2010.

View all posts by this author →

You might also like


Clavell hostages to be interviewed today

South Australian police hope to learn more about yesterday’s siege with wanted fugitive Rodney Clavell when they speak with some of his hostages today.

National 0 Comments

ACT election result yet to be decided

The result of the ACT election won’t be known for up to a week, with the Liberals and Labor both looking to the Greens to form a minority government.


Knox teacher kept his job after showing pornography

The Royal Commission in to child sex abuse has heard evidence from a former teacher and convicted sex offender today.

National 0 Comments

Logging bill expected to be debated into night

Legislation to seal Tasmania’s historic forestry peace deal is expected to pass the Lower House tonight, with support from the Greens.