Independent flood vote
THE Federal Government could have to wait until the end of the month to find out whether its $ 1.8 billion flood levy will pass parliament. The measure has passed through the lower house but needs the support of independent senator Nick Xenophon in the upper house. Senator Xenophon is yet to indicate which way he will vote, but says he wants the commonwealth to pressure states and territories to insure against natural disasters. He is also insisting there be a parliamentary inquiry into the issue, which would push a final vote through to the next sitting of parliament.