"The Two Houses under One Roof" New Parliament House Tip by Kakapo2

New Parliament House, Canberra: 52 reviews and 115 photos

  A reflection of the flagpole on the roof.
by Kakapo2

The Federal Parliament of Australia consists of two houses, the Senate and the House of Representatives.

76 senators form the Senate, 12 from each of the six states and two from each of the two mainland territories. The members are elected for six years, with half retiring every three years.

The number of members in the House of Representatives can vary slightly, due to the movement in the population, but it is always about 150 members. One member is elected for each district. The members are elected for about three years. The party that wins a majoity of seats forms the government.

The Senate chamber is furnished in shades of red, the House of Representatives in green. At the front of each chamber is an elevated chair for the presiding officer. This person is called President in the Senate and Speaker in the House of Representatives.

The members of the governing party sit to the right of the Speaker, the non-government members to the left. At the large table in front of the presiding officer you find the leaders of the major parties and clerks who advise members on procedure and make the formal records of the work of each chamber.

A gold mace is placed on the table when the House of Representatives is sitting.

From the Foyer you walk up to Queen's Terrace and Great Hall on the first floor. Having left the Great Hall, you reach Members' Hall. The Senate is to the right, the House of Representatives to the left.

Parliament House is open daily (except Christmas Day) from 9am to 5pm.

Question Time in both chambers begins at 2pm. Seats can be reserved for Question Time in the House of Representatives by calling (02) 6277 4889. (No res. necessary for Senate.)

The Queen's Terrace Café is open from 9.30am to 4.30pm.

Address: Capital Hill
othercontact: visitor.services@aph.gov.au
Phone: (02) 6277 5399
Website: http://www.aph.gov.au/

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Jul 8, 2007
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