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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 8 Hansard (26 October) . . Page.. 2131 ..

MR MOORE (continuing):

I understand that the Government considers that the motion would prevent them from carrying out some of the changes that they wish to carry out. That may be enough to sway me one way or the other. I have not yet decided, and I am not prepared to debate this motion at this stage and will avoid it if I can. Although effectively I have had 24 hours' notice - - -

Mr Humphries: More than we had.

MR MOORE: It might be more than the Government had, but I certainly knew that Ms Tucker would be attempting to do this today. Nevertheless, I felt that I was not prepared for it. We have a notice paper and a daily program. Where possible, we ought to stick to them. Other issues will be raised. Indeed, the Government departed from the daily program today, and I think that was reasonable. Normally, Ms Tucker would have given notice of a motion that would have been listed as private members business; and the Administration and Procedure Committee, of which she is a member, would then have given it a priority.

I think it is fair to say that there is no member in this house who has not had a fair go in terms of private members business and getting a priority to have their particular motion put up. We have always attempted to ensure that that is the case, and I believe that that will continue. The proper place for this is in private members business. If Ms Tucker wants to seek to extend private members business at the next sitting or the one after that, then let us talk about the need for that, and let us deal with her motion then. I think that it is inappropriate for us to debate this issue today through a motion. I was happy to do so through an MPI, but Ms Tucker chose to withdraw her MPI. I oppose the motion, Mr Speaker.

MR HUMPHRIES (Attorney-General) (4.20): Mr Speaker, we have come to the end of a sitting fortnight that stands against a background of a number of industrial issues around the Territory. Not only during that period but also before it, a number of unions have taken industrial action in respect of live issues. In the last hours of the Assembly sittings for this month, a motion is to be brought forward, apparently to radically alter the Government's approach towards industrial relations policy.

Mr Berry: Yes, that is right.

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Berry says that that is the case. I accept that there is disagreement on the part of Ms Tucker and those opposite about that approach.

Mr Speaker, I appeal to the Greens to consider what they do to the processes of government when they try to pull these sorts of - "stunts" is an uncharitable word - motions out of the hat in such a manner. The Government is pursuing, as every government in the country and indeed probably on the face of this planet has to pursue, certain policies in respect of management of industrial issues - negotiations on wages and conditions, occupational health and safety issues and so on - and management of their budgets. We are attempting to do the same thing in the context of the ACT Government and the ACT budget.

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