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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 12 Hansard (30 October) . .

Page.. 3836..

On this last point, it shows how serious the government is about asbestos safety. Unless the removal of bonded asbestos is minor or routine maintenance work, or other minor work carried out in accordance with the regulations, it will no longer be permitted in the territory except where undertaken by an appropriately licensed person. This means that if you are a person conducting a business or undertaking and you have been contracted to remove an area of the size of an average bathroom lined with bonded asbestos sheeting, it must be removed by a licensed asbestos removalist. Of course all friable asbestos must be removed by a licensed class A asbestos removalist.

Public and, particularly, worker safety is the main reason for these reforms. While it will assist in the program announced yesterday for homes affected by loose-fill asbestos insulation, this reform has a broader application. It will apply to asbestos safety management more generally. The government remains committed to continuing to have nation-leading asbestos management frameworks and practices.

A critical element of this reform package is the requirement for WorkSafe ACT as the work safety regulator to be notified five days prior to friable asbestos removal occurring and, in addition, the work safety regulations specify that if friable asbestos removal work is being undertaken on a residential premises anyone occupying premises in the immediate vicinity of the workplace must be informed. This is a practical regulation that will add to the community safety focus of the reforms.

Stakeholders and industry—including the ACT Work Safety Council, licensed assessors and removalists, the Master Builders Association, Housing Industry Association, Electrical Trade Union and the Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union—have been specifically consulted and actively support these proposals.

The bill and associated regulation amendment introduce an important reform that will have positive safety implications in the territory for years to come and ensure we remain at the forefront of asbestos safety regulation. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Hanson) adjourned to the next sitting.

Crimes (Sentencing) Amendment Bill 2014

Mr Corbell, pursuant to notice, presented the bill, its explanatory statement and a Human Rights Act compatibility statement.

Title read by Clerk.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for the Environment and Minister for Capital Metro) (10.50): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

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