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    1.3 Powers and functions of the Governor

    The Governor is authorised and required to do all things that belong to the Governor's office under any law.

    The powers of the Governor are derived from the Commission of Appointment, from the provisions of the Australia Act 1986 (Commonwealth), the Constitution of Queensland 2001, the Constitution Act 1867 and from the provisions of the many Acts which require certain things to be done or approved by the Governor in Council. The Constitution of Queensland 2001 sets out the circumstances when an Acting Governor or Deputy Governor may perform the functions of the Governor (see 3.3).

    The Governor also possesses certain powers known as the Royal Prerogatives, which are the powers of the Governor and not the Governor in Council. These Prerogatives have progressively been regulated by statute, beginning with the Bill of Rights in 1689 which forbade the King from raising taxes except with permission of Parliament. Some important Prerogatives remain unregulated, however.

    By convention, the Governor seeks the advice of the chief advisor, the Premier, in the exercise of these powers. Notable among these are the power to dissolve or prorogue Parliament, issue writs for election (although in practice writs are issued on the advice of Executive Council), to call upon a person to form a government, and the Royal Prerogative of Pardon or Remission of sentence, enabling the Governor to pardon, commute or reprieve execution of a sentence of a court or remit any fine, penalty, forfeiture or other consequence of conviction of an offender.

    1. See H V Evatt, The Royal Prerogative (Sydney: Law Book Company, 1987).
    2. Section 36 Constitution of Queensland 2001.

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    Last updated:
    18 May, 2016
    Last reviewed:
    10 October, 2012