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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 22 April 2021) . . Page.. 1033 ..


The Standing Committee on Economy and Gender and Economic Equality—the EGEE committee—wrote to the manager of government business on 9 April 2021 to advise about the motion we are talking about today.

The EGEE committee has been in conversation with the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, the PAC, to consider and discuss matters relating to its responsibilities and those of the PAC as specified in the resolution of establishment for general purpose standing committees of the Tenth Assembly. These matters specifically related to Treasury responsibilities, including revenue and taxation, which currently reside with the EGEE committee.

The Ninth Assembly decided to split the responsibilities of the PAC on 13 December 2016 by transferring some of its portfolio responsibilities, including Treasury, to the economic development committee. In response to the matter being raised by MLAs on 26 October 2017, most of the responsibilities previously transferred, including Treasury, were restored to the PAC.

There are historical, procedural, practice, oversight and scrutiny grounds that support reassigning the responsibility for Treasury matters to the PAC. Accordingly, as an outcome of discussion on this matter, the EGEE committee and PAC have agreed to propose for the Assembly’s consideration an amendment to the resolution of establishment, the amendment being to reassign the responsibilities of Treasury, including taxation and revenue, from the EGEE committee to the PAC.

I understand that Mrs Kikkert, as chair of PAC, will also speak to this motion. I commend the motion to the Assembly.

MRS KIKKERT (Ginninderra) (10.09): As Chair of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, I wish to convey to the Assembly the committee’s support for this motion to amend the resolution establishing the standing committees of the Tenth Assembly.

The Ninth Assembly was the first time longstanding PAC responsibilities had been split between two committees, with the non-Auditor-General aspects of PAC responsibilities initially allocated to the then Standing Committee on Economic Development and Tourism. However, within a year, the resolution was amended, and many of these responsibilities were returned to PAC.

The attempt at a similar delineation of responsibilities, this time between the Standing Committee on Economy and Gender and Economic Equality and the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, at the commencement of this Assembly, has also proved problematic. Of particular note has been the recent budget estimates process, which highlighted the ineffectiveness of having two committees undertake the same scrutiny role.

Whilst it is acknowledged that this amendment will probably result in an increased workload, the members of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts are committed to ensuring that its roles and responsibilities align as much as possible with the


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