Page 3395 - Week 10 - Thursday, 20 October 2022

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MS LAWDER (Brindabella) (10.18): Perfect timing. Thank you for bringing forward the motion today for the sitting pattern for the next year. The Canberra Liberals have consistently argued for more weeks in the sitting year. If you compare the ACT Legislative Assembly sitting pattern to other parliaments, we appear to have one of the least number of sitting weeks and days in all of Australia.

Apparently, this government does not have enough on their agenda, does not have enough vision and does not have enough to do to justify more sitting weeks in the parliamentary year. For example, we would also be happy to sit an additional day of the week in the sitting weeks, and this has consistently been rejected by the Labor-Greens government.

Whilst we are disappointed to see that it is just 13 weeks for 2023, I guess it is something that we are going to have to live with. Occasionally we have to schedule additional sitting days, and on this side we are more than happy to do that, because there are many things that we would like to see done in the ACT and we are more than happy to sit additional days.

MR BRADDOCK (Yerrabi) (10.20): The Greens will support the government sitting pattern agenda. There are a sufficient number of days to get through the government’s agenda. On the days that we are not in this chamber, we are still at work, whether it be in our electorates, in committees or in conducting annual reports hearings or estimates committees, so there is plenty for us to do.

MS CHEYNE (Ginninderra—Assistant Minister for Economic Development, Minister for the Arts, Minister for Business and Better Regulation, Minister for Human Rights and Minister for Multicultural Affairs) (10.20): In closing, I acknowledge Ms Lawder’s comments and underline Mr Braddock’s. I repeat my comments earlier that this does provide the balance we are looking for to enable all work of members to be undertaken, including the very important work of our committees in the scrutiny of bills and inquiries into bills, as well as investigations into various topics. We do believe we have the balance right here, but I take Ms Lawder’s comments on face value.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Justice and Community Safety—Standing Committee

Statement by chair

MR CAIN (Ginninderra) (10.21): Pursuant to standing order 246A, I wish to make a statement on behalf of the Standing Committee on Justice and Community Safety. At a private meeting on 13 October 2022 the committee considered the following petitions: 22-023 (Review the process of appointments to the ACT judiciary to allow transparency and for nominees to meet community expectations); 22-024 (Request independent review on the performance of the ACT judiciary in regards to sentencing in line with common and statutory laws); and 22-025 (To implement sentencing guidelines for grievous and purposefully reckless motor vehicle crimes and addressing re-offending recidivism).

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