Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 4 Hansard (25 June) . . Page.. 1121 ..
MR OSBORNE (continuing):
As Mr Humphries has indicated, it would still be possible for Mr Stanhope to move some amendments in August while this mechanism is being put in place. I do sympathise with what Mr Stanhope is trying to achieve. I do not quite know how we can do it if the Government is not on side, given that this is, perhaps, a money issue. I do not know whether we can pass any legislation which requires the Government to spend money, but I am quite prepared to work with Mr Stanhope. I know that Mr Rugendyke is very keen to accommodate what Mr Stanhope is trying to achieve; but, given that we still have sitting weeks between now and the time that this legislation will be enacted, I think it is sensible that we go ahead and support it. We will not be supporting adjournment of it.
MR KAINE (6.28): Mr Speaker, I think that my position on this issue is pretty much in line with that of Mr Osborne. I must say that I have had this legislation for quite some time and I only discovered, quite by accident, about an hour ago that Mr Stanhope was proposing to put amendments forward. I do not know - - -
Ms Tucker: It was not by accident; you were told.
MR KAINE: It was by accident. It was by accident that Ms Tucker happened to mention it to me and I did not know what she was talking about. In view of what the Minister has just said, I am reluctant to adjourn the debate on these issues because the Minister's Bills have my total support, as I indicated in the debate earlier. I think it would be a grave step to take simply to adjourn the debate and just leave the legislation sitting on the table for another three months. It is good legislation; it should be put into place.
Mr Stanhope's amendments may well have merit. I do not know, as I have not had a chance to look at them yet. I think that some compromise by which the legislation that has been on the table for some time is passed tonight, with some undertaking to look at Mr Stanhope's amendments in the longer term when we understand what the ramifications of them are, would be a sensible way to go. That is the course of action that I would adopt.
MR STANHOPE (Leader of the Opposition) (6.29): I seek leave to withdraw my amendments, Mr Speaker.
Amendments, by leave, withdrawn.
MR STANHOPE: May I speak to that?
MR SPEAKER: Yes, you may.
MR STANHOPE: I am, above everything else, a pragmatist. I will accept the Minister's offer in relation to the amendments. I will reintroduce them as a Bill in August and I will take the Minister's offer as given. I look forward to the considered support of members for these proposals in August.