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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 1 Hansard (12 December) . . Page.. 150..

Members staff

MR PRATT: My question is to Mr Corbell as the Minister for Industrial Relations. Mr Corbell, in your response to my question yesterday, you claimed that some people working in the Assembly were paid 20 per cent more than others doing exactly the same job under the contract system. Can you assure us that no member of staff in this Assembly will be worse off as a result of abolishing AWAs?

MR CORBELL: I think Mr Pratt misrepresents what I said yesterday. If I recall correctly-and I will check the Hansard-I was using a hypothetical example of the prospect of inequity that can occur through individual common law contracts. It was in that context that I drew that example. I am not aware of individual arrangements between members and their staff, nor should I be, but I am aware that the prospect is there for inequities to exist for people who are doing effectively the same work.

Mr Pratt also asked for a commitment that no employee will be worse off. The government's response on that issue is that we will want put in place a framework that accords an appropriate level of pay for the work done.

MR PRATT: I ask a supplementary question. Mr Corbell, will you please guarantee that the new system on Assembly budgets will not affect members staff allocations?

MR CORBELL: Members staff allocations are a matter for the Chief Minister. He is responsible for that act. I think the key issue here is that the government is seeking to put in place an industrial relations framework that ensures that people are paid for the level of work they do and that what they are paid is not based on some personal relationship with the member, although any employee/employer relationship is always important. We are seeking to make sure that people are paid for the level of work they do and that if people in different offices are doing the same work at the same level of responsibility they are paid a fair and equal level of remuneration. That is the approach we are trying to adopt.

I am surprised that the first and foremost concern of the shadow minister for industrial relations in both questions he has asked to date relates to the employment conditions of members of staff of the Assembly, when I am sure there are many other employees in the territory who have issues of far greater concern that perhaps need more urgent attention.

Mr Stanhope: I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

Auditor-General's Report No 11 of 2001


Mr Speaker presented the following paper:

Auditor-General Act-Auditor-General's Report No 11 of 2001-Financial Audits with Years Ending 30 June 2001/

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