Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 06 Hansard (Wednesday, 8 June 2022) . . Page.. 1818 ..
reasons, will be absent from question time. He is getting a PCR test to confirm, but it is likely that he will not be present for the rest of the sitting week as well. I will take questions in Minister Steel’s portfolios.
As I advised the Assembly yesterday, Minister Vassarotti is also going to be absent from question time today. The previous arrangements—questions to Minister Gentleman in relation to building and environment matters and to Minister Berry in relation to housing and homelessness matters—remain in place today.
Questions without notice
Canberra Institute of Technology—board
MS LEE: Madam Speaker, my question is to the Minister for Skills, which of course the Chief Minister will be taking. Minister, you have referred to the Canberra Institute of Technology Act 1987 multiple times in relation to the $8.87 million worth of CIT contracts. You repeatedly said that CIT is accountable to its board. Minister, who is the board accountable to? Section 7 of the act vests ultimate authority over CIT in the minister, and CIT receives the majority of its funding, as you are aware, from ACT taxpayers. I have already read the act, which is why I have referenced it, so please do not respond in that way! Who is the board accountable to?
MR BARR: The board has accountability as outlined under the act and under the various acts that are referenced in the CIT Act. I am sure that the Leader of the Opposition is aware, if you go to the tail end of the act, that the board has accountability under a number of different acts, including in relation to its reporting requirements ultimately, through the minister, to the Assembly.
MS LEE: Minister, who has the authority to make appointments to the CIT board?
MR BARR: The act outlines the skills requirements for the board, and the executive would make appointments.
MR MILLIGAN: Chief Minister, if the board is accountable to you, aren’t you ultimately responsible for this concerning use of funds?
MR BARR: I thank Mr Milligan for the question. Clearly, the Government Procurement Act also applies in this regard. Whilst there is ministerial responsibility and accountability, there is also accountability for the board, chief executive and anyone who is delegated authority under the Financial Management Act to make procurement decisions.
Canberra Institute of Technology—procurement
MS LEE: My question is to the Minister for Skills. Minister, I have received countless phone calls, messages and emails from CIT staff and students over the past 24 hours, relieved that these issues in relation to the CIT contracts are coming to light. What message do you have for the hardworking employees of CIT about these contracts?