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Labor wins penalty rates ploy in Senate, but loses key ally in House

Labor's audacious bid to restore penalty rates in the retail and hospitality sectors by piggy-backing one of the Federal Government's own IR bills fell at the first hurdle today, when rebel Nationals MP George Christensen indicated he could not support legislation that failed to protect businesses from back-pay claims.

Government ploughs on with IR bills despite citizenship questions

The Turnbull Government has listed two contested IR Bills for the debate in the Senate next week, setting it at odds with union calls to hold back controversial legislation until the citizenship status of MPs is clarified.

ABCC incurs $11 million external legal bill

The ABCC has reviewed its legal expenditure after an "overspend" in the past financial year that included a blowout to almost $11 million in billings for external advice, representing about a third of its $34 million budget.

Cash offered separate legislation on error-correction power

Employment Minister Michaelia Cash said last night that she made an offer to the Opposition to split-off into a separate Bill elements of the "four-yearly review" legislation that enable the FWC to overlook technical and minor errors in agreements, after tribunal president Iain Ross twice wrote asking her to urgently secure its passage.

ABCC in-house counsel quits over Hadgkiss conduct

The ABCC's in-house counsel has resigned after just weeks in the job, in order to "totally disassociate" himself from the actions of the watchdog's former leader, Nigel Hadgkiss.