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They will also make transparent the financial and non-financial performance of government activities and their reporting to the Assembly and to the community. There will be legislative requirements to report and the date by which these reports are due in the Legislative Assembly, and specific provisions for informing the Assembly on late reports and the reasons for them.

Annual report directions and guidelines issued under this legislation will support the adoption of a more rigorous approach by agencies to providing relevant information in annual reports. This will enable the Assembly to more accurately assess an agency's performance. Specified information will include performance indicators and narrative-type information which together will provide a more comprehensive understanding of an agency's performance. Requirements on chief executives’ performance will also be included in the annual report directions and guidelines. These directions and guidelines will be tabled in the Assembly to ensure that the maximum accountability and reporting requirements of the Assembly are met. By passing this legislation the Assembly will clearly indicate its requirement for a higher level of accountability and reporting by chief executives, both to the Assembly and to the community.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Detail Stage

Bill, by leave, taken as a whole

MS FOLLETT (Leader of the Opposition) (4.24), by leave: Mr Speaker, I move:

Page 4, lines 7 and 8, clause 6, subclause (1), omit “3 months”, substitute “10 weeks”.

Page 4, lines 17 and 18, clause 7, omit “3 months”, substitute “10 weeks”.

Page 6, line 2, clause 11, add the following subclause:

(2) The Minister shall not fix a time under subsection (1) that exceeds 10 weeks.”.

As I indicated in my speech in the in-principle stage of the debate, the purpose of the amendments that I am moving is to allow the Estimates Committee a greater length of time in which to consider annual reports. The effect of the three amendments is to reduce the reporting time for annual reports from three months to 10 weeks. I believe this is necessary in order to allow the Estimates Committee to do the job that the Assembly has asked them to do, and to report in the timeframe that the Assembly has asked them to report in. Mr Speaker, I commend the amendments to the Assembly. In doing so, I am fully aware that they will not take effect this year; they will take effect in future years.

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