Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 12 Hansard (14 November) . . Page.. 3675..
MR SMYTH (continuing):
committee also notes that the government agrees with the Auditor-General about the need for a legislative framework which strengthens accountability, and has proposed a process for ensuring wide consultation in the development of new legislation. The committee advises the Assembly that it will maintain a watching brief on the progress with the revised legislation.
Mr Speaker, pursuant to standing order 246A, the Standing Committee on Public Accounts has resolved that I make the following statement regarding the Auditor-General's report No 11 of 2001 entitled Financial audits with years ending 30 June 2001. I seek leave to table the statement and make a short statement.
MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, I present the following paper:
Public Accounts-Standing Committee-Auditor-General's Report No 11 of 2001-Financial audits with years ending 30 June 2001-Statement by Chair, dated 6 November 2002.
MR SPEAKER: Order, members! Mr Hargreaves, Mrs Cross. It is getting hard to hear.
MR SMYTH: I make the following statement to the Assembly on behalf of the committee: the Public Accounts Committee has considered the Auditor-General's report No 11 of 2001, entitled Financial audits with years ending 30 June 2001, along with the government's response. The committee wishes to make no further comment.
Mr Stanhope, pursuant to standing order 128, fixed the next day of sitting as the time for the moving of this motion.
Workers Compensation Supplementation Fund Amendment Bill 2002
Debate resumed from 12 November 2002, on motion by Mr Wood:
That this bill be agreed to in principle.
MR PRATT (4.26): Mr Speaker, on the surface, the Workers Compensation Supplementation Fund Amendment Bill is a reasonable piece of legislation. It is a fair and reasonable amendment to the process for the collection of a surcharge from business under the current provisions of the act.
However, the opposition does have grave concerns about this bill, because we feel that, in all practical effect, the government will use this bill as enabling legislation to impose a surcharge on business at a time when business cannot afford it. We believe that the imposition of a surcharge now or at any time in the foreseeable future would be highly inappropriate, given the pressure currently on businesses in the ACT as a result of both the insurance crisis and the effect of September 11 on workers compensation insurance premiums.