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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 10 Hansard (30 August) . . Page.. 3874..

MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

network. Labor is not opposed to a number of networks. That is a commercial decision. I do not have a problem with that. We do have a problem about saying you are going to do that to force competition and then removing competition for the operators.

The thrust of this bill is about accreditation, but in the interests of having a complete package it would have been preferable to have addressed the whole lot. It would have been nice. Nonetheless, Labor supports this initiative. It is a good initiative. We will also be supporting the amendments the minister is bringing forward. I will not be speaking to those amendments.

MR SMYTH (Minister for Urban Services, Minister for Business, Tourism and the Arts and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.25), in reply: I am grateful for the support of the Assembly. This bill is a good initiative. The several minor amendments to the bill follow consultation with MLAs, industry and the TWU. The amendments clarify that it is the taxi network rather than the taxi booking service that must be accredited and that a booking service may be operated by or for an accredited taxi network.

The main tenet of the bus legislation is repeated here for taxis. Both are public passenger services regulated by government, and the government has a duty to ensure that the best possible regulatory environment is provided for in the taxi industry. The best possible regulatory environment will ensure safety for drivers and the public, consumer protection, reliable services and high service standards. I believe the legislation provides such a platform, and I commend it to the Assembly.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Detail stage

Bill, by leave, taken as a whole.

MR SMYTH (Minister for Urban Services, Minister for Business, Tourism and the Arts and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.27): Mr Speaker, I ask for leave to move amendments 1 to 8, circulated in my name, together.

Leave granted.

MR SMYTH: I move amendments 1 to 8 circulated in my name together [see schedule 13 at page 3934].

Amendments agreed to.

Bill, as a whole, as amended, agreed to.

Bill, as amended, agreed to.

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