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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 13 Hansard (5 December) . . Page.. 4425 ..

MR BERRY (continuing):

The Government could argue - I am sure that it will, of course - that this motion before the house today is out of order. They could say that the determinations that were made in the past were void and that you cannot disallow something that is void. I am not sure that they would come up with that sort of admission. What I offer to them is a chance to admit before this place that they have mucked this up. They have made retrospective determinations which, it appears, are not permitted under the relevant legislation which I mentioned a little while ago and which the expert committee on legislation in this place drew attention to.

It is a serious issue of revenue for the ACT. What the Government needs to do now is to admit that it has made the mistake, admit that there are millions of dollars at risk and come back into this place with a Bill in order that we can debate whether or not there ought to be retrospective requirements by a backroom determination. This is the issue. The serious issue - - -

Mr Kaine: I raise a point of order, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: Sit down, Mr Berry.

Mr Kaine: Mr Berry's constant references to backroom and backdoor secrecy imply bad faith on the part of the Minister. He knows that there is no such thing, and he knows that the determination was subject to disallowance if he chose to move to disallow it at the time. To the extent that there is any problem, he is complicit in that problem.

MR SPEAKER: I uphold the point of order, Mr Kaine. You have moved disallowance, Mr Berry. The suggestion of "backdoor" is out of order. Withdraw it.

MR BERRY: Political points seem to be out of order too.

MR SPEAKER: Withdraw it.

MR BERRY: Political points - - -

MR SPEAKER: Withdraw it.

MR BERRY: Withdraw what?

MR SPEAKER: "Backdoor".

MR BERRY: I withdraw it.

MR SPEAKER: Thank you. Continue.

MR BERRY: Behind closed doors - - -

MR SPEAKER: No, I am sorry.

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