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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 05 Hansard (Thursday, 8 May 2008) . . Page.. 1710 ..


there, but I am not sure that the statistical basis proves that point. My view is certainly to make life easier for people in the voting system, not to create more impediments as a way of solving the problem of informal votes occurring. It is a challenge, but, as Mr Stefaniak said, we have had postal votes for an enormously long time.

I remember when I was a young political activist—I still think I am young, but not quite as young as I was—that that was a very important part of the party process, getting people to cast postal ballots. I know there were changes effected in 2004 that changed the role of the parties in that process, because it was perceived that they had undue influence in the administration of the voting. Yes, it probably is an advantage for them, but I am not entirely convinced that that was an improper advantage. I have never seen it applied improperly in the years I have been involved in politics. I think the tradition in both the Labor and Liberal parties of having volunteers go out and help older people complete their documentation, without breaching privacy issues or breaching the act, has worked pretty well over the years, but officials in the electoral office may be able to convince me otherwise. Anyway, I think those points have been well made and I will maintain the position as I have outlined.

Question put:

That the amendment be agreed to.

Ayes 7

Noes 8

Mrs Burke

Mr Pratt

Mr Barr

Mr Hargreaves

Mrs Dunne

Mr Smyth

Mr Berry

Ms MacDonald

Dr Foskey

Mr Stefaniak

Mr Corbell

Ms Porter

Mr Mulcahy

Mr Gentleman

Mr Stanhope

Question so resolved in the negative.

Amendment negatived.

Clause 17 agreed to.

Standing order 76—suspension

Motion (by Mr Corbell) agreed to, with the concurrence of an absolute majority:

That standing order 76 be suspended for the remainder of this sitting.

Clauses 18 to 33, by leave, taken together and agreed to.

Clause 34.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.42): The government will be opposing this clause. This clause introduces a range of new provisions in relation to disclosure laws. As I previously indicated in my in-principle speech, the government is not proposing to proceed with a wide range of these changes due to the recently announced national review of


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