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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 8 Hansard (19 August) . . Page.. 3608..


That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR SESELJA (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (10.19): I note that I am speaking instead of Mrs Dunne, who is away for family reasons this morning. The opposition will support this bill and the government amendment that the Attorney-General will introduce later.

This bill is one of a series of omnibus pieces of legislation to amend laws administered by the Department of Justice and Community Safety. Generally, the amendments are of a minor nature, although there are more substantive, but non-controversial, amendments to the ACAT Act, the Magistrates Act and the Prostitution Act, which I will outline shortly. The Attorney-General also will introduce a government amendment to the bill, amending the Firearms Act 1996, which I will address briefly at the appropriate time.

Sixteen acts and regulations are amended to insert a new definition of "bankrupt or personally insolvent", consistent with similar amendments made in the Statute Law Amendment Bill 2009 (No 2) and the Statute Law Amendment Bill 2010. They are: Associations Incorporation Act 1991; Associations Incorporation Regulation 1991; Cooperatives Act 2002; Corrections Management Act 2007; Crimes (Sentence Administration) Act 2005; Director of Public Prosecutions Act 1990; Domestic Violence Agencies Act 1986; Guardianship and Management of Property Act 1991; Human Rights Commission Act 2005; Independent Competition and Regulatory Commission Act 1997; Justices of the Peace Act 1989; Legal Aid Act 1977; Ombudsman Act 1989; Powers of Attorney Act 2006; Public Advocate Act 2005; and Public Trustee Act 1985.

There are more substantive, but non-controversial, amendments to three other acts. The amendments to the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal Act 2008 disaggregate the generic reference to temporary appointment of tribunal members, which could mean presidential, senior or ordinary members. Instead it will refer to the temporary appointment of presidential and non-presidential members, which can only be for up to 12 months. Non-presidential members include senior or ordinary members. Definitions are amended accordingly.

The amendments also make it clear that, unlike permanent presidential members, temporary presidential members are not excluded from doing other work without the Attorney-General's consent. The Magistrates Court Act 1930 is amended to enable the court to issue a warrant if a person appears in court in answer to a summons but then fails to appear in an adjourned hearing. This also applies in cases where the person first appears by lawyer but the court requires personal attendance at an adjourned hearing and the person fails to attend.

Finally, the amendments to the Prostitution Act 1992 update the term "sexually transmitted disease"so that it reads "sexually transmissible infection". This reflects terminology used nationally and in some local publications. These amendments make sense and we are pleased to support them.


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