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Mr Speaker, I will, along with my Labor colleagues, support the Supply Bill; but I do want to warn the Government that, if this is to be a pattern of providing the very barest minimum of information, with no explanation whatsoever, and totally obfuscating the spending patterns amongst administrative units and programs - in fact, making no apparent distinction between them - then it is very much cause for alarm. I would also remind them that the Assembly has a very good record of scrutiny of the government's financial management. Now that we have a new Government, do not think that that is going to change. I do not accept that the present format of the Supply Bill is adequate, and I hope that the Treasury people are listening. It is not adequate. They are going to have to do the work later rather than sooner.

I do not accept that presenting this number of amendments, minutes before the Bill is to be debated, is adequate. It is absolutely shameful. Mr Speaker, we had the new Administrative Arrangements yesterday. Why could we not at least have had notice of these amendments yesterday? Why could they not have been circulated? I think it is the height of sloppiness. It is a process that is designed to keep other Assembly members in the dark. Whilst I believe that we have no choice but to pass supply, I do not want anybody to think that I approve of the way that this has been brought forward.

MR MOORE (4.11): Mr Speaker, I would like to continue the theme that the Leader of the Opposition has raised, because I think that what we are having to deal with today is downright awful. First of all, Mr Speaker, some three months ago the Chief Minister gave reasons as to why she was going to put off the budget for those three months and I imagine that, for her, that was embarrassing enough. So it should have been, because we had established in this Assembly a system whereby we did not need a supply Bill and, by that method, things were more accountable and more open.

Therefore, Mr Speaker, the Chief Minister and the Treasury had three months up their sleeves, basically, to provide for us a full supply Bill that set things out entirely appropriately. If I were in the Government now, Mr Speaker, I would be feeling terribly embarrassed. They should be embarrassed. The question in my mind is this: Is this a deliberate move by the Government or is it a failure by bureaucrats? It still comes back to the responsibility of the Chief Minister, and no doubt she will be embarrassed; but Treasury, in particular, should also be terribly embarrassed. No doubt, Mr Speaker, some of the Treasury people are sitting behind me in the gallery today. If I were them, I would be going terribly red about now, and so they ought to be.

Mr Speaker, for us to have to deal with these amendments to this Supply Bill at this stage is simply unacceptable. It is made even more so by the fact that we have to deal with a supply Bill at all. We have a new Government and it is acceptable that they would want to take an extra few months to ensure that their own stamp is on the budget. That is why I was prepared this one time only to allow a supply Bill as a way of dealing with this, but this should be the last time that we ever have to go through this process, Mr Speaker.

The Leader of the Opposition drew to our attention a comparison between the current Supply Bill as it is and the Acts that I have in my hand at the moment, for 1994-95, 1993-94 and 1992-93. The difference is quite extraordinary. It seems to me, Mr Speaker, that to change it in this way would require a deliberate decision. This is not something that has just happened. A deliberate decision was made at some level.

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