Bendigo to host major public discussion on Federation

September 15 / 166


Bendigo will host a major public discussion on the best way forward for Australian democracy, following the recent release of the Federal Government’s White Paper on the Reform of the Federation.


Organised by the University and supported by Bendigo and Adelaide Bank and the City of Greater Bendigo, the discussion will be led by ABC News Breakfast presenter, Virginia Trioli, at the Ulumbarra Theatre, Bendigo, on Thursday 10 September. 

Speakers will include Dr John Hewson, John Brumby, leading constitutional law expert Laureate Professor Cheryl Saunders from the University of Melbourne Law School, Tax and Legal Partner Paul Abbey from Price Waterhouse Coopers and Bronwyn Hinz from the Melbourne School of Government.

The event is an opportunity for regional Victorians to have their say on this important issue.

Greater Bendigo City Council Mayor, Cr Peter Cox, said the public is invited to the free discussion among legal experts and political leaders to join the debate on the reform of the Australian Federal Democracy.

“It’s appropriate for Bendigo to host such an important event given the major role Bendigo played in the events leading to the founding of the nation.

“Sir John Quick was from Bendigo and was one of the founding fathers of Federation and helped draft the Constitution. So it is fitting to be having this important discussion here in Bendigo,” Cr Cox said.

Panel member Professor Saunders, who was co-author of the ‘Ten Principles of Federal Reform’, said the debate needed the voice of the public.

“Reform of the federation should fully involve the people,” Professor Saunders said. "They give legitimacy to the government, which is accountable to them.”

Bendigo and Adelaide Bank Chairman, Robert Johanson, said it seems both timely and fitting that Bendigo will play host to a public discussion on the future of federation.

“Bendigo is one of regional Victoria’s most progressive and contemporary centres and plays an important role for the central Victorian economy.

“Alfred Deakin reinvigorated the federation debate with his great speech in Bendigo in 1898. We hope regional Victorians take the opportunity to have their say and be part of this important discussion,” Mr Johanson said.

Date: Thursday 10 September, 2015

Time: 4.00pm – 5.30pm

Place: Ulumbarra Theatre

Bookings essential 

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