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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 7 Hansard (1 July) . . Page.. 3231..


MS GALLAGHER (continuing):

However, the Howard government enacted federal legislation in the Workplace Relations Act 1996 that specifically provides that it is illegal for federal awards to set maximum or minimum hours of work for regular part-time employees. The Australian Industrial Relations Commission was therefore forced to remove these protections for part-time workers through the awards simplification process, and part-time employees are now able to work a shorter span of hours each week.

Part-time workers should not be disadvantaged as a result of entitlements to annual leave. If a part-time employee is now working an average of five hours a week, then they should be entitled to take annual leave on a pro rata basis according to their average hours.

I thank members for their support of this bill. Also, I acknowledge the work of Garrett Purtill and the Office of Industrial Relations in putting this bill together.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.

Bill agreed to.

Adjournment

Motion (by Ms Gallagher ) proposed:

That the Assembly do now adjourn.

Gungahlin Drive extension

MR WOOD (Minister for Disability, Housing and Community Services, Minister for Urban Services, Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for Arts and Heritage, and Acting Minister for Health) (10.03): Yesterday, the Canberra Times quoted a spokesman for me, in my capacity as urban services minister answering questions about Gungahlin Drive extension, as saying there was no requirement for government ecologists to be on site at all times during tree-felling operations.

I am making this statement because the Canberra Times did not print a correction today, as I sought. As I explained to the reporter when the article was being prepared, that was not correct. The reporter's initial question to my media adviser was about the Environment ACT rangers. My media adviser confirmed that there was no requirement for them to be present. However, he then stated that biodiversity consultants or ecologists were required to be there. This is exactly what I said in the Assembly on Tuesday afternoon after question time.

The reporter then named someone to my media adviser, and my adviser confirmed that this person was in fact a biodiversity consultant or ecologist working for Environment ACT. There was a brief discussion about his status and what he does and the fact that he


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