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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 9 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 2508 ..

Ms McRae: But it said "any other Act".

Mrs Carnell: Yes, but it was an amendment to an Act that is no longer valid.

Ms Follett: Mr Speaker, if I may speak to the point of order, the fact that a further Appropriation Bill is passed does not mean that the previous one ceases to be in existence; quite the contrary. The Appropriation Bill is passed every year for the simple reason that the other one is still on the books. It is not like the Supply Bill, which does cease to exist. This is an amendment to the Appropriation Act and, as the amendment moved by you, Mr Speaker, said that the motion would apply to the Appropriation Act or any other Act, it is my view that it is still in operation.

Mr Moore: Do not worry, because I will put that as my fourth amendment and you will be able to support it then.

Ms McRae: We have never supported it, Michael.

MR SPEAKER: Order! It is a matter of law - - -

Mr Connolly: Mr Speaker, could I urge you to seek legal advice on this. In a previous existence, I had to give a legal advising - Mr Humphries would be familiar with this case - on the question of a person who dies intestate. There was a substantial asset. When there is nobody to take the asset it goes to the Crown. The question was: Which Crown? That issue, which arose in 1990, turned on the Commonwealth Appropriation Act 1988, which set up the first financial body politic of the ACT. In 1990, the clear view of Commonwealth legal advisers, because this went to a published advice by the Commonwealth Solicitor-General, was that it turned on the interpretation of the 1988 Appropriation Act. So Appropriation Acts, while it is very rare, can, in my advice to you now, be valid. I would urge you to take a formal advising on this point - not now, obviously.

MR SPEAKER: That is exactly what I was about to say. It is a point of law, and I do not know that I am going to be able to get one at 20 to two in the morning. Could I take it on notice?

Mr Connolly: Yes.

MR SPEAKER: I do not know that I can do anything else, to be perfectly honest.

Ms McRae: I am sorry, Mr Speaker; but, quite seriously, if we are going to contemplate any activity similar to that again, I think we need to know the legal status of the first one.

MR SPEAKER: I do not know that I have any choice, Ms McRae, except to take it on notice for the moment.

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