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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 6 Hansard (22 June) . . Page.. 1614 ..

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, I think that in all ordinary circumstances it would be appropriate to adjourn, but these are not ordinary circumstances. The legislation before the house is important and it should be dealt with. I do not particularly want to come back here in the first full week of July for a further week of sitting. Mr Speaker, we would probably need more than a full week of sitting in July to deal with the business that was left over. We would probably need at least a couple of days in a second week of sitting in July. That, in my view, is not necessary; we should deal with these matters this week.

MR MOORE (Minister for Health and Community Care): Mr Speaker, I wish to make an explanation under standing order 47.

Mr Berry: Afterwards.

MR MOORE: I am entitled to make it now.

MR SPEAKER: Just a moment. Nobody else stood. Mr Moore may proceed.

MR MOORE: It will be a very brief explanation, Mr Speaker. I wish to clarify something. It is on the matter of the contact with my office about the mental health legislation. I indicate that there was no contact with my office on dealing with this issue today. Mr Berry indicated that there had been an approach to my office on how we would deal with the mental health legislation, and that was a spin on the issue. What actually happened, Mr Speaker, was that a departmental liaison officer from my office who was providing extra information to Mr Wood in his office was told by Mr Wood words to the effect: "We do not have any problems with the legislation", which is a very different issue - I will say it very briefly - from saying that this needs to be dealt with today before the sunset clause takes effect.

MS TUCKER (11.18): I will be supporting this motion. I took advice from the Clerk and I have read the standing orders relating to the issue. For me, it is similar to the discussion and consideration of Mr Osborne's possible proposal of adjourning the no-confidence motion until September. In deciding whether or not I would support Mr Osborne's motion I considered issues of fairness and appropriateness and propriety in a parliament. In that case I would have voted with the Government against Mr Osborne's proposal to adjourn, but that did not occur anyway.

I am supporting Labor's motion to suspend government business today because I believe it is a very serious issues for a community when its government is on notice as possibly not having the confidence of the Assembly of the time. It is a matter of such gravity that it would be quite inconsistent to allow the Government at the same time to proceed with its business as if everything is normal. For that reason I am supporting this sentiment as good parliamentary process.

A precedent has been raised this morning by Mr Moore regarding the sunset clause. I must say that this is really quite surprising because it is not as if the Government had no idea that this was a possibility. We have all been very well aware of this no-confidence motion coming from Labor. Everyone, I would imagine, is aware that there are precedents for seven days' suspension of business. Therefore I am surprised

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