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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2013 Week 2 Hansard (14 February) . . Page.. 592..


... are designed to ensure that applicants only litigate their business. For an application to have standing demands a connection between the applicant's interest and the relief sought. As a general rule the Court will not recognise busybodies who interfere in things that do not concern them.

The difficulty, of course, in light of those comments from Justice Graham, is that public law by its very nature is everybody's business. Standing law rules were developed in the 19th century English courts in the context of private law matters. At that time there were very few public law actions or remedies. They were never designed as a filter or preventive measure so that matters may remain in error for want of the correct person to bring them before a court.

The underlying intention of the bill is to improve the quality of administrative decision making and ensure that government decisions are not above the law. In some way, we are all subject to statutory decisions, either directly or indirectly, and there should be a public right to remedy errors in those decisions. I would strongly encourage all in the community with an interest in the matter to make a submission on the bill.

Public Accounts—Standing Committee

Statement by chair

MR SESELJA (Brindabella): Pursuant to standing order 246A I wish to make a statement on behalf of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts relating to inquiries about certain Auditor-General's reports currently before the committee.

On 22 December 2011, Auditor-General's report No 6 of 2011 was referred to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts for inquiry. This report presented the results of a performance audit on the regulatory framework for managing food safety and its implementation in the ACT and contained 10 recommendations.

The committee received a submission from the government dated 31 July 2012. In its submission, the government agreed to nine of the report's recommendations and agreed in part to the remaining recommendation.

The committee has resolved to make no further inquiries into the report. As the audit report deals with matters that fall within the portfolio coverage of the Standing Committee on Health, Ageing, Community and Social Services, the public accounts committee has written to that committee to bring the report to its attention.

On 3 April 2012, Auditor-General's report No 1 of 2012 was referred to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts for inquiry. This report presented the results of a performance audit on monitoring and minimising harm caused by problem gambling in the ACT and contained nine recommendations.

The committee received a submission from the government on 2 July 2012. In its submission, the government agreed to eight of the report's recommendations and did not agree to the remaining recommendation.


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