Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 02 Hansard (Thursday, 24 March 2022) . . Page.. 587 ..
changes to the names of committees and changes to the scope of the subject of such committees—legislative references have become outdated.
As a result, it is not always clear which committee is taken to be responsible for performing a particular function. This, members, is largely a technical bill that seeks to remedy this problem. It will ensure that there is greater precision and clarity in the way that all ACT enactments refer to Assembly standing committees.
The bill amends provisions across all ACT statutes in which there is reference to an Assembly committee so that, moving forward, it is rendered simply as “a relevant Assembly committee”. A relevant Assembly committee will be defined as a standing committee of the Legislative Assembly nominated in writing to the Speaker for that provision. What this means is that the Speaker will nominate a particular standing committee to perform that statutory function. It provides flexibility and an adaptable approach that can withstand changes, big or small, to committees’ resolutions of appointment. The bill does not alter or otherwise affect statutory functions that are performed by Assembly standing committees.
It is important to remind members that there are several important exceptions to this approach. Under the proposed amendments to the bill, the Speaker will not be given the power to nominate a committee to perform functions pursuant to the Legislative Assembly (Office of the Legislative Assembly) Act, the Auditor-General Act, the Electoral Act, the Integrity Commission Act or the Ombudsman Act. These exceptions are included so that no conflict of interest with the Speaker’s performance of other functions under these acts is seen to arise. I would like to thank members for their support, and I commend the bill to the Assembly.
Bill agreed to in principle.
Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.
Bill agreed to.
Sitting suspended from 12.03 to 2.00 pm.
MR BARR (Kurrajong—Chief Minister, Treasurer, Minister for Climate Action, Minister for Economic Development and Minister for Tourism) (2.00): Again, the Attorney-General is absent from question time, so there will be the same acting arrangements for questions as for the last two days—Attorney-General’s to Minister Cheyne, and the environment portfolio and climate change ones to me.
Leave of absence
Motion (by Ms Lawder) agreed to:
That leave of absence be granted to Mr Hanson today for personal reasons.