Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 12 Hansard (Thursday, 20 October 2005) . . Page.. 3915 ..
drafting practices, language usage, printing formats and styles throughout the years. It is important to maintain a minimum level of consistency in presentation and cohesion between legislation coming from different sources at different times so that better access to, and understanding of, the law is achieved.
Statute law amendment bills deal with four kinds of matters. Schedule 1 provides for minor, non-controversial amendments proposed by government agencies. Schedule 2 contains amendments of the Legislation Act 2001 proposed by parliamentary counsel to ensure the overall structure of the statute book is cohesive and consistent and is developed to reflect best practice. Schedule 3 contains technical amendments proposed by parliamentary counsel to correct minor typographical or clerical errors through grammar or syntax, omit redundant provisions, include explanatory notes or otherwise update or improve the form of the legislation. Schedule 4 repeals redundant legislation.
Mr Speaker, the bill contains a large number of minor amendments with detailed explanatory notes, so it is not useful for me to go through them now. However, I would like to mention briefly several matters. Schedule 1 includes an amendment of the Land (Planning and Environment) Act 1991 to remove an anomaly relating to when an approval to conduct a development would become effective if an objection were made to the application for approval.
As the act stands, the approval can take effect before the end of the period for making an application to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for review of the decision to give the approval. This is because the period after which the approval became effective, and the application period for AAT review, can begin on different days. This will be the case if the objector or third party is not notified of the decision on the day that it is made.
The anomaly is removed by bringing the operation of the provision about when the approval becomes effective into line with the time limit for an objector to apply to the AAT for review of the decision to give the approval. The amendment gives effect to the suggestion of the AAT in the recent case of Tonks and ACT Planning and Land Authority that the act should be amended to ensure consistency between the two provisions.
Schedule 1 also includes amendments of the Waste Minimisation Act 2001 to change references to the Environment Protection Authority to the chief executive. The amendments will enable administrative responsibility for the act to be set in the usual way by administrative arrangements under the self-government act and the Public Sector Management Act 1994. The purpose of the amendments is to facilitate the transfer of administrative responsibility for the act from the Minister for the Environment to the Minister for Urban Services. In practice, ACT No Waste has practical responsibility for the matters covered by the act.
The amendments of the Legislation Act in schedule 2 reflect the ongoing review by parliamentary counsel of the act’s operation and the improvement of its usefulness. The amendments include the remaking of the provisions about the reckoning of time to provide comprehensively for working out the time for doing something required or allowed to be done under an act or statutory instrument. The new provisions do not significantly change the law, but rather deal with a range of cases not dealt with by the existing provisions of the Legislation Act. The amendments are intended to create greater