How Mark Butler voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should increase support for the Australian film and television industry by, for example, increasing the amount of Australian programming spending required by television broadcasting organisations

Division Mark Butler Supporters vote Division outcome

2nd Jun 2021, 12:02 PM – Representatives Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (2021 Measures No. 1) Bill 2021 - Consideration in Detail - Australian programming

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The majority voted in favour of disagreeing with an amendment introduced by Greenway MP Michelle Rowland (Labor), which means it failed. Its purpose was to remove Schedule 1 from the bill. The schedule halves the annual expenditure requirement for Australian drama programming from 10% to 5% for subscription television broadcasting licensees.

Amendment text

(1) Clause 2, page 2 (table item 2), omit the table item.

(2) Schedule 1, page 3 (line 1) to page 6 (line 7), omit the Schedule.

What does this bill do?

According to the explanatory memorandum, the bill:

contain[s] a package of five measures designed to improve the operation for services in the broadcasting sector and to simplify regulation by removing redundant and otherwise unnecessary provisions.

The proposed measures in the Bill would amend the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (the BSA) and the Radiocommunications Act 1992 (the RA) to:

a. reduce regulatory burden on subscription television broadcasting licensees by halving the annual expenditure requirement for Australian drama programming from 10 per cent to 5 per cent and amend on an ongoing basis;

b. move the subscription television captioning rules from the BSA into a disallowable Ministerial instrument;

c. repeal a redundant provision from the digital radio framework in the RA to reflect that there is now only one spectrum band for digital radio;

d. extend grandfathering arrangements for new population determinations made by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA); and

e. extend the timeframe for ACMA to implement grants under the Regional and Small Publishers Innovation (RASPI) Fund beyond 30 June 2021.

Note that explanatory memoranda are prepared by the party introducing the bill and so are not as reliable as bill digests, which are prepared by the parliamentary library. However, there is not currently a bills digest available for this bill.

In explaining the Labor Party position on the bill, Shadow Minister for Communications and Greenway MP Michelle Rowland (Labor) explained:

Labor will not stand in the way of minor regulatory housekeeping, which is much of what this bill presents, but we will not be a part of this government's attempt to dismantle bit by bit the Australian screen content rules without anything new being put in their place. Labor will not stand in the way of the changes to captioning rules, changes to digital radio channel plans, changes affecting regional commercial radio licensees or the extension of the time frame for the ACMA to make grants for original journalism. These measures may not be perfect, but Labor won't stand in their way. But Labor will not support the halving of Foxtel's Australian screen content obligation in the absence of new requirements to support the screening of stories on our screens.

No No (strong) Passed by a small majority

2nd Jun 2021, 11:59 AM – Representatives Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (2021 Measures No. 1) Bill 2021 - Second Reading - Agree with bill's main idea

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The majority voted in favour of agreeing with the main idea of the bill. In parliamentary jargon, they voted to read the bill for a second time. This means that they can now consider it in greater detail.

What does this bill do?

According to the explanatory memorandum, the bill:

contain[s] a package of five measures designed to improve the operation for services in the broadcasting sector and to simplify regulation by removing redundant and otherwise unnecessary provisions.

The proposed measures in the Bill would amend the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 (the BSA) and the Radiocommunications Act 1992 (the RA) to:

a. reduce regulatory burden on subscription television broadcasting licensees by halving the annual expenditure requirement for Australian drama programming from 10 per cent to 5 per cent and amend on an ongoing basis;

b. move the subscription television captioning rules from the BSA into a disallowable Ministerial instrument;

c. repeal a redundant provision from the digital radio framework in the RA to reflect that there is now only one spectrum band for digital radio;

d. extend grandfathering arrangements for new population determinations made by the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA); and

e. extend the timeframe for ACMA to implement grants under the Regional and Small Publishers Innovation (RASPI) Fund beyond 30 June 2021.

Note that explanatory memoranda are prepared by the party introducing the bill and so are not as reliable as bill digests, which are prepared by the parliamentary library. However, there is not currently a bills digest available for this bill.

In explaining the Labor Party position on the bill, Shadow Minister for Communications and Greenway MP Michelle Rowland (Labor) explained:

Labor will not stand in the way of minor regulatory housekeeping, which is much of what this bill presents, but we will not be a part of this government's attempt to dismantle bit by bit the Australian screen content rules without anything new being put in their place. Labor will not stand in the way of the changes to captioning rules, changes to digital radio channel plans, changes affecting regional commercial radio licensees or the extension of the time frame for the ACMA to make grants for original journalism. These measures may not be perfect, but Labor won't stand in their way. But Labor will not support the halving of Foxtel's Australian screen content obligation in the absence of new requirements to support the screening of stories on our screens.

No No (strong) Passed by a small majority

How "voted very strongly for" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 2 100 100
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
MP absent 0 0 0
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 0 0 0
Total: 100 100

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 100 / 100 = 100%.

And then