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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 12 Hansard (18 October) . . Page.. 3793..


MR STEFANIAK (continuing):

circulated to members when the Assembly was not sitting. I commend the report to the Assembly.

Financial Management Legislation Amendment Bill 2005

Detail stage

Clause 1.

Debate resumed from 22 September 2005.

Clause 1 agreed to.

Remainder of bill, by leave, taken as a whole.

MR MULCAHY (Molonglo) (5.23): I seek leave to move amendments Nos 1 to 5 and 7 and 8 circulated in my name together.

Leave granted.

MR MULCAHY: I move amendments Nos 1 to 5 and 7 and 8 circulated in my name [see schedule 1 at page 3810].

Amendments Nos 1 to 3 are commencement provisions for the amendments that follow. Amendment No 4, which I was pleased to hear the Treasurer say he accepts, ensures that financial statements are included as part of annual reports and are therefore subject to the Annual Reports (Government Agencies) Act 2004, which provides for presentation of annual reports to the Assembly within three months after the end of the relevant financial year.

Amendment No 5 replaces the proposed section 30D and ensures that annual statements of performance are included as part of annual reports and are therefore subject to the Annual Reports (Government Agencies) Act 2004. Amendment No 7 provides for annual financial statements of territory authorities to be included in their annual reports, thereby ensuring that they are covered by the Annual Reports (Government Agencies) Act 2004. Finally, amendment No 8 similarly provides for annual statements of performance of territory authorities to be included in their annual reports, thereby ensuring that they are covered by the Annual Reports (Government Agencies) Act 2004.

To briefly recap on the reasons for these amendments, under proposed new section 30D of the government's bill, a minister would have to present an annual statement of performance and associated Auditor-General's report to the Assembly within six sitting days after the day the responsible chief executive receives the Auditor-General's report. The problem is that there is no time limit in the legislation for statements of financial performance to be received by chief executives. That could possibly result in lengthy and unnecessary delays to members of the Assembly receiving reports, especially if the Assembly is not sitting.

For example, this year if an Auditor-General's report associated with a departmental annual financial statement was received by the responsible chief executive at the end of September, the composite document may have missed the October sittings of the


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