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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 11 Hansard (10 December) . . Page.. 3427 ..

MS CARNELL (continuing):

In conclusion, Mr Speaker, the Racing Bill 1998 is the culmination of a long process. It fulfils a commitment of this Government. This Bill will pave the way for the ACT Racing Club finally to achieve principal racing club status and become a member of the Australian Racing Board. The ARB has signified its agreement to the provisions of this Bill relating to the ACT Racing Club's application for membership. The Bill will provide the same opportunity to the Canberra Greyhound Racing Club and the Canberra Harness Racing Club, enabling those clubs to become members of their peak national bodies.

The Racing Bill 1998 finally establishes a legislative framework which provides for the proper conduct of racing in the ACT.

Debate (on motion by Mr Quinlan) adjourned.


MS CARNELL (Chief Minister and Treasurer) (10.46): Mr Speaker, I present the Duties Bill 1998.

Title read by Clerk.


That this Bill be agreed to in principle.

Mr Speaker, this is a Bill for an Act to replace the existing Stamp Duties and Taxes Act 1987. The introduction of this Bill will provide further opportunities for consultation with the ACT community before the debate scheduled for next year.

The Bill is the result of the stamp duties rewrite project undertaken by the State revenue offices of New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT in the past few years. This project aimed to produce, as far as possible, stamp duty legislation which is contemporary in language and presentation, simple to administer and, wherever practicable, consistent across the participating jurisdictions.

The Duties Bill closely follows the New South Wales Duties Act 1997 by adopting the same structure and chapter, part and division headings, as well as the same definitions of terms. Most of the provisions contained within the Bill are also identical to those contained in the New South Wales Act. The exemptions arise mainly from the adoption of ACT specific exemptions or a different ACT policy position on a small number of issues.

The Bill also aims to close a number of loopholes which exist in the current Stamp Duties and Taxes Act, particularly in the areas of trusts and the transfer of interests in ACT land through companies and trust units. Adoption of the ACT approach will result in a wider range of transactions being brought to duty, although the range of properties subject to duty will not increase significantly.

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