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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 01 Hansard (Wednesday, 3 May 1995) . . Page.. 107 ..


There is, of course, a question of expense. If television footage were gathered here by the method used in the Federal Parliament, then there would be an expense for the Assembly. However, until such time as we have to go to that expense, there is no reason why the Administration and Procedures Committee - which you chair, Mr Speaker - could not authorise the televising of Assembly proceedings within the controlled situation provided for by the Bill. The Bill is structured in such a way that broadcasts of proceedings would be authorised under set conditions with a penalty of 50 penalty units, or at this point $5,000, for unauthorised broadcasts. It is not a case of saying that it will be a free-for-all. It has to be carried out responsibly. The Bill also takes into account the issue of defamation, which has always been a major concern in the reporting of statements that are made under parliamentary privilege. I believe that the Bill adequately deals with that situation.

Mr Speaker, the final point that I would like to make, in encouraging members to look positively on this piece of legislation, is that I believe that it will give improved standards for members of the Legislative Assembly. We have seen the Chief Minister introduce a code of conduct for Ministers, and the Leader of the Opposition has indicated that she will be introducing for debate a further code of conduct for other members of the Assembly. It seems to me that one way to hold members to standards is through improved scrutiny. This piece of legislation would allow for the best possible form of scrutiny. There is a very big difference between speaking in this Assembly when - I make a quick estimate - there are up to 20 people here and speaking when you know that what you are saying may well be reported right across Canberra. Such broadcasting would indeed mean that we had improved standards. The legislation is about openness, it is about accountability, and I believe that it will improve the way this Assembly operates. I commend the Bill to members.

Debate (on motion by Mr Humphries) adjourned.

MOTOR TRAFFIC (AMENDMENT) BILL 1995

MR MOORE (10.43): I present the Motor Traffic (Amendment) Bill 1995.

Title read by Clerk.

MR MOORE: I move:

That this Bill be agreed to in principle.

Mr Speaker, in presenting this Bill to the Assembly, I seek to implement in the ACT a system of convenience and efficiency that has already been implemented in New South Wales. Remembering that we are surrounded by New South Wales, it would seem appropriate that, where possible, our traffic regulations and rules and legislation be in line with those of New South Wales. Certainly in Sydney it is quite common to find on a traffic light a sign that says that you may turn left on a red light.


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