Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 3 Hansard (28 May) . . Page.. 741 ..
MR KAINE (3.52): I move:
Omit paragraph (3), substitute the following paragraphs:
"(3) That the resolution of the Assembly of 28 April 1998 which established the General Purpose Standing Committees be amended by omitting paragraph (4) and substituting the following paragraph:
`(4) The Standing Committee on Justice and Community Safety shall consist of four members and each of the other General Purpose Standing Committees shall consist of three members.'.
(4) Mr Hird be appointed a member of the Standing Committee on Justice and Community Safety.".
My amendment to Mr Humphries's motion, first of all, varies the resolution of 28 April which established the general purpose standing committees by increasing the membership of the Standing Committee on Justice and Community Safety to four members and, secondly, amends Mr Humphries's motion in connection with that committee by removing the requirement for me to stand aside from it and merely suggests that Mr Hird be added as a fourth member.
Mr Speaker, I know that there has been a general understanding that the committees would consist of three members. I agreed to that at the time that they were structured because I was happy to be a member of certain committees. Because circumstances have changed, I am being asked to stand down. I have no objection to standing down from the Education Committee. Ms Tucker has agreed to stand down from the Committee for the Chief Minister's Portfolio to allow me to stay on it.
The only committee about which I have any concern is the Justice and Community Safety Committee. That is a committee in which I have a considerable interest. I was pleased to be able to take a position on that committee. I would very much like to continue to be a part of that committee, because I think its work is important. I do not see that the concept of three members to a committee is necessarily sacrosanct. We have had various numbers of members on committees over the nine-year life of the Assembly. Although it will produce a circumstance different from that which applies to the other committees, I am seeking the indulgence of the Assembly to stay on the Justice and Community Safety Committee. I understand the Government's desire to have one of their own members on the committee, and I am happy to support the motion that Mr Hird should join it; but I am seeking the support of the Assembly for my continued membership of that committee.