Is there somewhere that details, for each act the commonwealth parliament passes, which section/s of the constitution authorises that act?

Thanks for your question, Phillip. In short, the answer is no!

However, there are a number of checks and balances to ensure that bills – proposed laws – are constitutional.

For a bill to become a law, it needs to be passed by both the Senate and the House of Representatives. This means the majority of members of parliament agree to the bill by voting in support of it. Before senators and members vote, they have the opportunity to scrutinise – closely examine – the bill, including raising any concerns about whether the proposed law is unconstitutional.

If both houses agree to a bill, it is presented to the Governor-General for Royal Assent. The Governor-General shares in the responsibility for ensuring that Australia is governed according to the rules set out in the Australian Constitution. They can question whether a proposed law is constitutional and withhold Royal Assent for a bill considered unconstitutional.

Even following Royal Assent, an Act of Parliament may be challenged in the High Court of Australia which can strike down a law if it is found to be unconstitutional.

The Australian Parliament: the Queen (represented by the Governor-General), the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Parliament of Australia.

Parliamentary Education Office (peo.gov.au)

Parliament of Australia.

The Australian Parliament: the Queen (represented by the Governor-General), the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Parliamentary Education Office (peo.gov.au)

Description

This diagram illustrates the composition of the Australian Parliament. The Australian Parliament is made up of the Queen (represented by the Governor-General), the Senate and the House of Representatives.