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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 2 Hansard (19 February) . .

Page.. 658..


This goes to the issue of the wording on the ballot paper. This is another one of the matters that the committee looked at, and it recommended a change to the wording on the ballot paper. The rationale for this, in our view, was to make the instructions to people who are voting clearer, to maximise people's understanding of the Hare-Clark electoral system and to ensure they voted in a way that most effectively utilises that system so that voters have the maximum impact with their vote.

I think this is a worthwhile change. We believe it offers clarity to voters. I commend this amendment to the Assembly.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Deputy Chief Minister, Attorney-General, Minister for Health, Minister for the Environment and Minister for Capital Metro) (5.52): This amendment proposes to change the wording shown on the ballot paper as to instructing people on how they should cast a valid vote. The government has sought the advice of the Electoral Commissioner on this suggested wording. His advice is that the proposed wording could lead to confusion and that there is not a problem with the existing wording. The government agrees and will not be supporting this amendment.

MR HANSON (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (5.53): I understand what Mr Rattenbury is trying to achieve here, but I do also understand the advice that I believe has been put forward by the Electoral Commissioner. I again say that this is one of those areas that are not related to campaign finance. It is separate. It is not something that will become live until closer to the election. It is something that I would be happy to continue with further discussions on. I would like to understand, perhaps, what the concerns may be from the Electoral Commissioner in more detail.

I express that we are, again, happy to put a pin in this one, come back to it and treat this as a separate issue from the package of finance reforms which we need to enact together. This one and the one we discussed previously with regard to the distance from the polling place are two that could be discussed and brought back separately after those discussions. We have not been convinced at this stage that it should happen, but we are certainly open to those further discussions.

Proposed new clauses 57C and 57D negatived.

Remainder of bill, by leave, taken as a whole and agreed to.

Bill, as amended, agreed to.

Estimates 2015-2016—Select Committee

Membership

MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Madam Speaker has been notified, in writing, of the following nominations for membership to the Select Committee on Estimates 2015-2016: Dr Bourke, Ms Fitzharris, Ms Lawder and Mr Smyth.


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