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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 9 Hansard (27 August) . . Page.. 2614 ..

MR STEFANIAK (continuing):

I think, Ms Reilly, there is a real need for information on the impact of this award. I understand that both Confact and ACTCOSS held information sessions on the award and its implications several months ago. It is my view that the community sector should look at all the implications before considering moving staff under the new award. Services operating in the community sector which are funded by the ACT Government will need to examine their structures and operations in order to reduce the cost of the award implementation. Non-government organisations which move staff under the award will also need to establish that their translation is a reasonable one. Once the necessary information is available, the Government will be working to develop a strategy for addressing this matter.

The Government is purchasing a consultancy to establish a reasonable benchmarking of the award's translation for the current logged services. This will provide an external independent point of reference for the Government, for the boards of management and for organisational staff. We are expecting to have that in October. It is certainly an issue that the Government is very aware of, and we are working through that with the various organisations.

MS REILLY: I have a supplementary question, Mr Speaker. What I am trying to work out from what you have just said, Mr Stefaniak, is this: Does that mean that when you award contracts you are not going to take into account the rates of pay for those who will be working under them, as you have made no decision at this stage on those rates of pay that you will comply with?

MR STEFANIAK: The rates of pay are terribly relevant, Mr Speaker, because the award means that provisions have to be made for pay.

Mr De Domenico: If they are logged.

MR STEFANIAK: Exactly; if they are logged. Some organisations have logged them; others have not. Things such as rates of pay are very important to take into account, and that is what the Government is currently working through with these organisations. As you can appreciate, Ms Reilly, not all organisations in the sector have been logged or, indeed, are actually seeking funding in relation to those awards. Those are the sorts of things that have to be worked through as organisations consider their position in relation to the award, and the rates of pay are absolutely crucial.

Public Sector - Job Cuts

MR WOOD: Mr Speaker, my question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, on 16 April, in response to my question, you indicated that the Office of Financial Management was modelling the likely impact on the ACT economy of the Federal Government's job cuts. Further, you said:

... we have identified the sorts of costs that would occur to the ACT if some of the, I believe, outlandish figures that some people, including some of those opposite, have been bandying around ...

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