kids encyclopedia robot

Parliament of South Australia facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Parliament of South Australia
54th Parliament
Coat of arms or logo
Houses Legislative Council
House of Assembly
Founded 22 April 1857; 167 years ago (22 April 1857)
Elizabeth II
Since 6 February 1952
Frances Adamson
Since 7 October 2021
Speaker of the House of Assembly
Dan Cregan, Independent
Since 12 October 2021
President of the Legislative Council
John Dawkins, Independent
Since 8 September 2020
Peter Malinauskas, Labor
Since 21 March 2022
Leader of the Opposition
David Speirs, Liberal
Since 21 March 2022
Seats 69
47 MHAs
22 MLCs
2022.02.20 South Australian House of Assembly - Composition of Members.svg
House of Assembly political groups
Government (27)
     Labor (27)

Opposition (16)
     Liberal (16)

Crossbench (6)
     Independent (6)
2022.02.20 South Australian Legislative Council - Composition of Members.svg
Legislative Council political groups
Government (8)
     Liberal (8)

Opposition (8)
     Labor (8)

Crossbench (6)
     SA-BEST (2)
     Greens (2)
     Advance SA (1)
     Independent (1)
Length of term
House: 4 years
Council: 8 years
House of Assembly voting system
Instant-runoff Vote
Legislative Council voting system
Single Transferable Vote
Last general election
17 March 2018
Next general election
19 March 2022
Redistricting Redistributions are carried out after each election by the South Australian Electoral Districts Boundaries Commission.
Meeting place
Adelaide parliament house.JPG
Parliament House,
Adelaide, South Australia,
Constitution of South Australia

The Parliament of South Australia is the bicameral legislature of the Australian state of South Australia. It consists of the 47-seat House of Assembly (lower house) and the 22-seat Legislative Council (upper house). General elections are held every 4 years, with all of the lower house and half of the upper house filled at each election. It follows a Westminster system of parliamentary government with the executive branch required to both sit in parliament and hold the confidence of the House of Assembly. The parliament is based at Parliament House on North Terrace in the state capital of Adelaide.

The Queen is represented in the State by the Governor of South Australia. According to the South Australian Constitution, unlike the federal parliament, and the parliaments of the other states of Australia, neither the Sovereign or the Governor is considered to be a part of the South Australian parliament. However, the same role and powers are granted to them.

The parliament may make laws for any matter within South Australia, subject to the Constitution of South Australia. Its power is further limited by the ability for the federal parliament to override it in some circumstances, subject to the Constitution of Australia. Similarly, the Supreme Court of South Australia, and ultimately the High Court of Australia, provides judicial oversight of parliament. The parliament is also vested with other powers, such as the means to investigate matters, conduct research and summon witnesses.


The Parliament of South Australia began in 1857, when the colony was granted self-government. Women gained the right to vote and stand for election in 1895, taking effect at the 1896 election.

South Australia became a state of the Commonwealth of Australia in 1901 following a vote to Federate with the other British colonies of Australia. While smaller than the Eastern states, South Australia has often been at the vanguard of political and social change in Australia.

House of Assembly

The House of Assembly (or "lower house") is made up of 47 members who are each elected by the full-preference instant-runoff voting system in single-member electorates. Each of the 47 electoral districts (electorates) contains approximately the same number of voters, and boundaries are redistributed after each election by the Electoral Commission of South Australia, an independent body.

Government is formed in the House of Assembly by the leader of the party or coalition who can demonstrate they have the support of the majority of the House, and is called upon by the Governor to form government. The leader of the government becomes the Premier.

While South Australia's total population is 1.7 million, Adelaide's population is 1.3 million − uniquely, over 75 percent of the state's population resides in the metropolitan area and has 72 percent of seats (34 of 47) alongside a lack of comparatively-sized rural population centres, therefore the metropolitan area tends to decide election outcomes. At the 2014 election for example, although the state-wide two-party vote (2PP) was 47.0% Labor v 53.0% Liberal, the metropolitan area recorded a 2PP of 51.5% Labor v 48.5% Liberal.


The seat of the Parliament of South Australia is Parliament House in the state capital of Adelaide. Parliament House sits on the North-Western corner of the intersection of King William Street and North Terrace.

Images for kids

kids search engine
Parliament of South Australia Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.