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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 7 Hansard (29 June) . . Page.. 2687..


Standing and temporary orders—suspension

Motion (by Ms Gallagher) agreed to, with the concurrence of an absolute majority:

That so much of the standing and temporary orders be suspended as would prevent order of the day No 1, Executive business, relating to the Territory-owned Corporations Amendment Bill 2010, being determined during this sitting period.

Territory-owned Corporations Amendment Bill 2010

Debate resumed from 22 June 2010, on motion by Ms Gallagher:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (11.47): The opposition will be supporting this bill, and I thank the Treasurer for arranging a briefing on the bill. While it is not a particularly technical proposal as such, we wanted to be assured about some of the detail of the government's intention.

As members would know, the opposition has been calling for this level of disclosure of remuneration details for some time, and we are delighted to see that the Treasurer has seen the merit of our proposition. We reinforce the broader public interest in the reporting of information such as remuneration details. There has been reporting of the remuneration details of directors and senior executives who are employed by listed companies, for instance, for some years. There is a commensurate public interest in having appropriate reporting from territory-owned corporations on remuneration matters for directors and senior executives.

I do note, however, the comments from the scrutiny of bills committee on this particular bill and on, in particular, the issue of privacy. Consequently, some more detailed comments are called for on the effects of the provisions in this bill. Territory-owned corporations, or TOCs, as they are known, are owned by the taxpayers of the ACT. In that capacity, all taxpayers are effectively shareholders in the ACT's TOCs. As shareholders, we would and should be interested in how each TOC is being managed and how it is performing and whether the management structure and senior management are appropriate for the role of each TOC. In view of these issues, shareholders should make sure that the right people are being paid the right remuneration, commensurate with the responsibilities attaching to each director and senior manager in each TOC.

As shareholders, we deserve the same access to information as has been given to shareholders of publicly listed companies—and shareholders of listed companies have access to detailed remuneration information. Can I just refer, for instance, to the Wesfarmers annual report extract. It is a representative example of the approach to reporting remuneration information. For instance, for the year, they list each of the non-executive directors and there is detail of their fees and allowances, their short-term benefits, post-employment benefits and superannuation and other


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