Do you have statistics about the history of the parliament showing, by year, how many bills were introduced and passed?
The usual path of a bill.
Parliamentary Education Office (peo.gov.au)
This diagram illustrates the usual path of a bill through the Australian Parliament to become Australian law.
In the House of Representatives a bill goes through the following stages:
- 1st reading—the bill is introduced to the House of Representatives.
- 2nd reading—members debate and vote on the main idea of the bill.
- House committee (optional stage)—public inquiry into the bill and reporting back to the House.
- Consideration in detail (optional stage)—members discuss the bill in detail, including any changes to the bill.
- 3rd reading—members vote on the bill in its final form.
The bill is passed in the House of Representatives and sent to the Senate.
Senate referral—the Senate may refer the text of the bill to a Senate committee for inquiry (this can happen while the bill is in the House).
In the Senate a bill goes through the following stages:
- 1st reading—the bill is introduced to the Senate.
- 2nd reading—senators debate and vote on the main idea of the bill.
- Senate committee (optional stage)—public inquiry into the bill and reporting back to the Senate.
- Committee of the whole (optional stage)—senators discuss the bill in detail, including any changes to the bill.
- 3rd reading—senators vote on the bill in its final form.
- The bill is passed in the Senate.
The bill is given Royal Assent—The Governor-General signs the bill.
The bill becomes an Act of Parliament—a law for Australia.
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Thanks for your great question Mark.
The House of Representatives has put together a very interesting table of statistics about this topic, dating back to 1901. You can find the table by following this link and clicking on ‘General statistics’.
Using this table, you can see that the largest number of bills – proposed laws – passed into law in one year is 264 (in 1992) and the smallest number of bills passed into law in one year is 12 (in 1907). The average number of laws made per year since 1901 is 108.
This table does not list how many bills have been presented to the Senate each year. You can find a record of all the bills passed by the Senate in each Parliament going back to the 31st Parliament (1978-80) on the Australian Parliament House website.