Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 11 Hansard (24 September) . . Page.. 3283 ..
MS TUCKER (continuing):
the Construction Industry Training Fund, but the proposal before us cannot be looked at in isolation from the longer-term training needs of the industry. There is a real risk in financing a short-term fix to training needs before any long-term strategies are in place for either training or job creation.
As for the issue of increasing the funds available to the Construction Industry Training Fund, we believe there are a number of issues that need sorting out also. Although there is some benefit in the skills centre proposal, whether it really will generate 50 new jobs appears to be questionable, and what happens at the end of next year has not been addressed. It is also concerning that, although the Long Service Leave Board does not have a formal statutory role in how employer long service leave contributions are spent, they are not happy with the way the Government has acted. That is another reason why we believe this Bill is premature and needs looking at again with all the parties, not just one or two.
The Greens will oppose this Bill today, for the reasons I have just given, but we would look very favourably on some longer-term strategies for training in the industry. The actuarial report on the Long Service Leave Board has raised a number of concerns about the way the training levy is used, especially big equity issues about who can access the fund. It is obviously of critical importance that these issues be addressed, hopefully in a more cooperative way than has happened so far. If this Bill is not passed today, we would welcome the opportunity to look at it again at a later time when these issues have had a chance to be addressed in more detail.
MR OSBORNE (11.27): I would have to say that it all sounds very attractive; but, for me, some very worrying issues have been raised today, and I feel they need to be addressed before I could be comfortable in voting on this issue. That being the case, I move:
That the debate be adjourned.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
Debate resumed from 27 August 1996, on motion by Mrs Carnell:
That this Bill be agreed to in principle.
Debate (on motion by Mr Stefaniak) adjourned.