Constitution of Victoria

The Constitution of Victoria is the Constitution of the State of Victoria, Australia. The current Constitution was enacted in 1975, and has been amended several times.

Constitution Act 1975
Victoria Parliament House Melbourne.jpg
Parliament of Victoria
  • An Act to re-enact the Law relating to the Constitution of the State of Victoria and for other purposes
CitationNo. 8750 of 1975
Territorial extentVictoria
Enacted byLegislative Assembly
Enacted8 May 1975[1]
Enacted byLegislative Council
Enacted8 May 1975
Royal assent22 October 1975[2]
Commenced1 December 1975
Legislative history
Bill introduced in the Legislative AssemblyConstitution Bill
Introduced byVernon Wilcox
First reading9 April 1975[3]
Second reading15 April–1 May 1975
Third reading1 May 1975
Bill introduced in the Legislative CouncilConstitution Bill
Introduced byAlan Hunt
First reading1 May 1975[4]
Second reading6[5]–8 May 1975
Third reading8 May 1975[6]
Amends
The Constitution Act Amendment Act 1958 (No. 6224)
Solicitor-General Act 1958 (No. 6374)
Supreme Court Act 1958 (No. 6387)
Repeals
Victorian Constitution Act 1855 (No. 184 of 1855, UK)
Amended by
120+ amendments
Keywords
constitution
Status: Amended

Since 1901 Victoria has been a State of the Commonwealth of Australia, and its relationship with the Commonwealth is regulated by the Australian Constitution. The jurisdiction of the Victorian Parliament to make laws and the laws of Victoria are subject to limitations imposed by the Australian Constitution.

The Victorian Constitution is based on principles of the Westminster system of responsible government, as modified due to Victoria being a state within a federation of Australia.

HistoryEdit

The original Constitution of Victoria was drafted and approved in Melbourne in March 1854 by the first Victorian Legislative Council, and sent to Britain for assent. It was received in London in May 1854 and, after some opposition and delay,[7] was approved (with some amendments) as an Act of the British Parliament in 1855.[8] It was passed by the United Kingdom Parliament as the Victoria Constitution Act 1855, was granted Royal Assent on 16 July 1855 and was proclaimed in Victoria on 23 November 1855.[9][10] The Constitution established the Westminster-style system of responsible government.[11]

The 1855 Constitution, though an Act of the British Parliament, could be and was amended by the Victorian Parliament from time to time. Changes have included parliamentary membership numbers, voter eligibility, payment of members, voting methods, size of the ministry, electorate numbers and the powers and responsibilities of the Legislative Council and the Legislative Assembly, besides other matters.

In 1901, the Australian colonies, including Victoria, formed the Commonwealth of Australia which was constituted by the Australian Constitution. The jurisdiction of the Victorian Parliament to make laws and the laws of Victoria became subject to limitations imposed by the Australian Constitution.

On 22 October 1975 the Hamer Government proclaimed a new Constitution as an Act of the Parliament of Victoria[12] to replace the 1855 Constitution.

In 2003, the 1975 Constitution was amended to entrench certain provisions, such as the representation of Victorian voters in Parliament, by requiring amendments to those provisions to require a referendum.[13] The 2003 amendments also provided for fixed-four year terms for both Houses, election of the Legislative Council by proportional representation, removal of the Council's power to block a supply bill (the budget) and a dispute resolution process for bills for which agreement between the houses cannot be reached.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/images/stories/historical_hansard/VicHansard_19750508.pdf
  2. ^ http://www.legislation.vic.gov.au/domino/web_notes/LDMS/pubhome.nsf/b3c7a3d4da84828dca256dd60010122f/0ce31dcb527fb9c1ca257e7600183750/$FILE/A1A20190801.pdf
  3. ^ https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/images/stories/historical_hansard/VicHansard_19750408_19750415.pdf
  4. ^ https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/images/stories/historical_hansard/VicHansard_19750430_19750501.pdf
  5. ^ https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/images/stories/historical_hansard/VicHansard_19750506_19750507.pdf
  6. ^ https://www.parliament.vic.gov.au/images/stories/historical_hansard/VicHansard_19750508.pdf
  7. ^ History of Australia (2011) by George William Rusden, p.97
  8. ^ The Constitution was attached as a schedule to Act of the Imperial Parliament passed in the 18th and 19th years of the reign of Her Majesty Queen Victoria intituled "An Act to enable Her Majesty to Assent to a Bill, as amended, of the Legislature of Victoria to establish a Constitution in and for the Colony of Victoria"
  9. ^ "Victoria Constitution Act 1855" (PDF). Retrieved 5 May 2013.
  10. ^ "Altering Victoria's Constitution". Fact Sheet D3: Altering Victoria's Constitution. Parliament of Victoria. October 2010. Retrieved 5 March 2011.
  11. ^ "Victoria Constitution Act 1855". An Act to enable Her Majesty to assent to a Bill, as amended, of the Legislature of Victoria, to establish a Constitution in and for the Colony of Victoria. Parliament of the United Kingdom. 1855. Archived from the original on 12 March 2011. Retrieved 5 March 2011.
  12. ^ Constitution Act 1975 History of Australia
  13. ^ Constitution (Parliamentary Reform) Act 2003

External linksEdit