NEWS

High Court To Hand Down Postal Survey Decision On Thursday

At 2.15pm we'll all find out if the Government's survey will go ahead.

06/09/2017 4:59 PM AEST | Updated 06/09/2017 5:01 PM AEST
Fairfax
Challengers to the government's SSM survey head into court.

The High Court will deliver on Thursday afternoon its decision on whether the Government's same-sex marriage postal survey can go ahead.

For the past two days the full bench of the High Court has heard two challenges to the Federal Government's controversial and non-binding survey on changing the Marriage Act to recognise same-sex marriages.

The court is expected to deliver its decision at 2.15pm on Thursday.

On Wednesday Commonwealth Solicitor-General Stephen Donaghue defended the survey as appropriate use of a government contingency fund, while opponents spent the previous day challenging the scheme.

Essentially the court is being asked to decide if the postal survey is a vote or a collection of statistical data, and if the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) has the authority to conduct the poll.

The government is drawing $122 million from a fund available for "urgent and unforeseen" items to run the ballot -- money it says it appropriated lawfully.

Survey papers are expected to be sent to households throughout the country from early next week.

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