Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 3 Hansard (13 March) . . Page.. 1101..
costs are also incurred regarding occupational health and safety and workers compensation matters). However, a significant proportion of this amount does relate to the costs of legal advice and assistance regarding enforcement action under the Dangerous Goods Act.
WorkCover was provided with additional budget funding of $400,000 for 2001-02 to meet legal and security expenses in relation to fireworks matters through a change to the WorkCover appropriation (see page 74 of 2002-03 Budget Paper 4). This means that there has been no deflection of existing resources from the important occupational health and safety education and compliance functions undertaken by WorkCover.
(8) Nominal Insurer Levies (Page 83):
Nominal Insurer Levies came down to $75,000 in 2001-02, yet administration costs amounted to approx $130,000 or 46% of total expenditure. This ratio appears very high compared to insurance industry average administrative figures of 12 - 15%, particularly when there are only 39 Nominal Insurer claims being managed.
(a) Can the Minister explain why these figures are so high in relation to the insurance industry average.
The work performed by the Nominal Insurer cannot be compared directly with claims management costs in the private sector, because the functions performed by the Nominal Insurer are not limited to claims management.
The Nominal Insurer receives numerous requests each year from solicitors acting on behalf of injured workers seeking to establish whether there was an insurer at the time of injury (injuries will have occurred up to 20 years ago). Investigation to establish who was the insurer for a claim (which is necessary to ensure that the Nominal Insurer does not meet the costs of claims which should be made against an insurer) takes significant time and resources.
This investigation and research, which requires additional administrative expenses in the short term, reduces long-term claim costs to the Nominal Insurer. The Nominal Insurer is also required to seek recovery of costs from employers who failed to take out compulsory insurance policies and to take enforcement action where appropriate.
(Question No 445)
Mr Pratt asked the Minister for Education, Youth and Family Services, upon notice:
In relation to reduced class sizes from Kindergarten to Year 3:
1) In (a) 2001 - 02 for K - Yr2 and (b) 2002 - 2003 for Y 3, how many of the following classes have been reduced (i) Kindergarten (ii) Year 1 (iii) Year 2 and (iv) Year 3;