The following has been mentioned in the Budget paper of 2020-21 as part of the Government's budget measures:
The Government will apply the family sponsorship framework to Partner visas which will mandate character checks and the sharing of personal information as part of a mandatory sponsorship application, and subject the sponsor to enforceable sponsorship obligations.
These changes will complement existing family violence provisions within the Partner visa program.
The Government will introduce English language requirements for Partner visa applicants and their permanent resident sponsors. These changes will help support English language acquisition and enhance social cohesion and economic participation outcomes. This measure is estimated to increase receipts by $4.9 million over the forward estimates period.
Source of the above: (https://budget.gov.au/2020-21/content/bp2/download/bp2_complete.pdf)
While the sponsorship framework has been passed through the introduction of regulations a while back, the English testing for partner visa applicants seem to be a new introduction by the government. The partner visa has never previously had English language requirements to be met by the applicants.
The sponsorship framework changes would include approval of the sponsorship prior to the lodgement of the partner visa application. This means there would be no bridging visa available for the applicants up until the sponsorship is approved and the partner visa is lodged.