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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 1 Hansard (30 April) . . Page.. 254 ..

MR HUMPHRIES: It is not in the interests of committees to have members who are so hard pressed on other committee work that they cannot contribute adequately to those committees. Members of the Labor Party have the luxury of being members of only one or two committees each, which is not the case on the Government side of the chamber. I think the three-member committee we have already established is quite sufficient.

MR OSBORNE (4.11): I will be brief too, Mr Speaker. I think Mr Humphries does raise some valid points. If I were elected as chairman of the committee, I would be more than happy for any other members that had the time to be involved in all discussions and all meetings of that committee. I am a little intrigued that it is Mr Berry putting this motion up, given that my recollection of events is that he panned the whole inquiry of Professor Pettit. Even as late as last week, on radio, he accused Professor Pettit of running the agenda of certain politicians in this place. However, I am prepared to forgive him for that. Do not shake your head, Mr Berry. You know that is true. I heard what you said, Mr Berry. I will not be supporting this motion, mainly because of the arguments of Mr Humphries but also because it has been put up by Mr Berry, whose history on this whole report is not really good.

MR HIRD (4.12): Mr Speaker, I will be brief too. I must say that what Mr Berry is trying to do shows that he does not, or so it appears on the surface, have confidence in his party leader. This is one of the high-powered committees considering an important matter of 10 years of self-government. Mr Osborne, having advocated this, could be seen as the person that motivated this chamber and the Chief Minister to move towards the inquiry. Mr Osborne will serve on the committee, with your good self as the presiding officer, and the Leader of the Opposition. With your background, what further strength could you get by placing another two members on that committee? This does not do well for Mr Berry. He should have stopped and thought about it, instead of worrying about standing order 46. I urge members not to vote for this motion.

MS TUCKER (4.13): I rise to support this motion. This is a very important select committee and it is quite appropriate that there be broader membership. I am quite happy to support it.

Mr Osborne: Anyone can come.

MS TUCKER: "Anyone can come", Mr Osborne says, but I think it is important to also have members at the deliberative meetings of committees. If your offer is that there can be broader representation in the deliberative sessions of the committee, that is quite different.

Mr Osborne: They can be there. They just cannot vote.

MS TUCKER: They cannot vote. It is quite appropriate to have broader membership. I do understand the arguments of Mr Humphries about workload, but that is how it goes. It is only a select committee anyway. It is not going to be that you have to do that work for the whole term of this Assembly. So for this particular important discussion I think we will just have to find the time.

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