On 29 April 1901, the Commonwealth of Australia Gazette Number 27 published…a competition to design the new flag…Australia’s first Prime Minister, Edmund Barton, announced the winning design in Melbourne on 3 September 1901. The design had a mixed reception and caused some controversy at the time, usually on aesthetic grounds rather than its Anglophile nature.
In the original design the Federation Star contained only 6 points and the Southern Cross was represented by stars ranging from 5 to 9 points to indicate their relative apparent brightness in the night sky.
The adoption of the winning flag design was never debated in the Australian Parliament – it was sent to the Imperial Authorities in England to be approved. It wasn’t until late 1902 that King Edward VII formally notified the Australian Government of the approval, and this approval was finally Gazetted on 20 February 1903.
– History of the Australian Flag, Flagspot.com