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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 04 Hansard (Friday, 23 April 2021) . . Page.. 1169 ..


MADAM SPEAKER: Ms Cheyne.

MS CHEYNE: I am the responsible minister for this work, together with Minister Stephen-Smith. Work has been underway on this for some time. We are working very closely with the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander community in the ACT. We are looking forward to having more to say on it in the coming months.

MRS JONES: A supplementary question. Minister, will you commit to having an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children and young people commissioner within two years, as the incoming portfolio brief states?

MS CHEYNE: I am not going to announce government policy, Madam Speaker, but it is absolutely a commitment for this government. It is in the parliamentary and governing agreement; it is something that we have committed to. But we want to work with the community to make sure that we get it right, that it reflects what the community desires. That is exactly what we are doing.

Government—territory-owned corporations

MS CLAY: My question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, the parliamentary and governing agreement includes an agreed reform to require employee and consumer representation on the board of major ACT territory-owned corporations and government businesses, like ActewAGL and Icon Water. What will this look like, and when will it be completed?

MR BARR: The government is well underway with the delivery of this particular initiative. There are some definitional questions around what constitutes a major government entity, but I can advise that, for example, the CIT board, the University of Canberra council and the Public Cemeteries Board have existing arrangements that would, in my view, meet the requirements here. In some instances there would need to be legislative change, potentially, or an appointments process when vacancies next occur. Where legislation requires particular skill sets, it may be possible to find individuals who have those skill sets as well as a representative element.

In the context, Ms Clay, of the question, ActewAGL is a joint venture and has a very strict and small board that is apportioned according to the ownership shares. It would not be part of this, but Icon Water, which is an ACT government wholly-owned entity, is potentially an eligible board in this context. The Territory-owned Corporations Act has certain legal requirements around the appointment of directors. We would be cognisant of that in the implementation of this parliamentary and governing agreement item.

MS CLAY: Chief Minister, what will the selection process look like for deciding who the employee and consumer representatives on the boards are?

MR BARR: The government’s approach has been to have an expression of interest process against the legislative requirements for the individual boards. There are some set out in legislation that require a particular skill set or range of skills in order to be


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