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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 7 Hansard (19 October) . . Page.. 1897..


MS FOLLETT (continuing):

There is one other matter that I would like to refer to, Mr Speaker, and I again draw on the report of the Select Committee on the Establishment of an ACT Public Service. I would like to quote from the report which was submitted by Mr Trevor Kaine as the chair. In the preface to the report Mr Kaine said this:

In view of the complexity and importance of the issues raised during the inquiry, the Committee considers that another Committee should be established to investigate further these concerns and to oversee the implementation of the Public Sector Management Bill 1994 and related legislation, and the transition to a separate ACT Government Service.

In the first recommendation of Mr Kaine's committee they said:

The Committee recommends that a Committee of the Assembly be established to inquire into and report from time to time on the implementation of legislation establishing the Australian Capital Territory Government Service, and the transition to the Australian Capital Territory Government Service.

As I say, Mr Speaker, that was Mr Kaine's report of June 1994. Members will be aware that the committee which the Assembly accepted as having the role outlined by Mr Kaine was the Public Accounts Committee. When all is said and done, the action that I have taken in referring the Public Sector Management (Amendment) Bill to the Public Accounts Committee is entirely consistent with every scrutiny of this matter by the Assembly to date. It ought not to be resisted by the Government. In fact, they ought to welcome it as another opportunity for the very important issues in this legislation to be looked at by members of this Assembly, and also to be looked at or commented upon by the community that we serve and that the SES officers will be serving also. Mr Speaker, I commend the amended motion to the Assembly, and I trust that it will pass without dissent.

MRS CARNELL (Chief Minister) (4.14): The Government will be supporting the amended motion. We also give an undertaking to the Assembly that the Government will have its response circulated to the Assembly on 1 December. That means that the committee will report, I think, on the Wednesday, which is the 29th; the Government's response will be circulated on Friday, the 1st; and we will be looking forward to debating the Bill in the Assembly in the following week. The Assembly will have an opportunity over the weekend and for those few days to read both the Government's response and the committee's report. We can get on with the job of debating the legislation in that week that follows.

It is essential that this legislation be put to the Assembly as soon as possible, simply because there has been a quite long process already, a process that included a representative working party of Senior Executive Service members that was elected from various parts of the Senior Executive Service that have been through the whole process. I have had meetings with all of the SES officers. We have worked


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