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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 7 Hansard (19 June) . . Page.. 1917 ..

Suspension of Standing Orders

Motion (by Ms Tucker) agreed to, with the concurrence of an absolute majority:

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent private members business having precedence over all other business for 2 hours and that it be called on forthwith.


MS TUCKER (3.29): I present the Territory Owned Corporations (Amendment) Bill 1996.

Title read by Clerk.

MS TUCKER: I move:

That this Bill be agreed to in principle.

Mr Speaker, the Bill I present today is to amend the Territory Owned Corporations Act. The first amendment we are proposing is to add to the principal objectives of Territory-owned corporations two additional objectives - namely, a requirement that Territory-owned corporations display a sense of social responsibility by having regard to the interests of the community in which they operate; and, where their activities affect the environment, a requirement that they conduct their operations in compliance with the principles of ecologically sustainable development. These principles are also set out in the amendment before us.

There is increasing community interest in governments demonstrating that social and environmental factors have been taken into consideration in decision-making. The Greens believe that it is important that the objectives of Territory-owned corporations reflect the broad range of community concerns.

MR SPEAKER: Order! There is far too much audible conversation. Ms Tucker has the floor.

MS TUCKER: No-one seems even vaguely interested, but that is typical.

Mr Moore: Come on!

MS TUCKER: Not you, Mr Moore.

Just because a government body is to be run on a commercial basis does not lessen this expectation. In fact, I believe that it makes it all the more important that these broader objectives be spelt out quite clearly in legislation. In a climate where performance measures are increasingly used as a basis for evaluation, it is all the more important that an organisation have explicit objectives against which it should report and be evaluated.

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