Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 9 Hansard (1 September) . . Page.. 2753 ..
MR HIRD: I thank members. I table the document.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
MS TUCKER: I seek leave to make a personal explanation under standing order 47.
MR SPEAKER: Proceed
MS TUCKER: I just heard Mr Hird totally misrepresent what I said in my speech. I do not know whether he was not listening or whether he misunderstood. The Greens of course are supportive of rail transport. I ask Mr Hird to read Hansard later so that he understands what I said. I will not go through my whole speech again. I said that while we do support rail transport we want to see a proper assessment of the commercial viability as well as environmental issues done first, which is a reasonable process and one that I understand is normally supported by people in this Government. I did not want to pre-empt the process by supporting this motion.
That this Bill be agreed to in principle.
MR HUMPHRIES (Treasurer, Attorney-General and Minister for Justice and Community Safety) (5.38): The Government will not be supporting this Bill. I hope that members will consider very carefully the basis on which it is brought forward. It has not had a particularly large amount of public scrutiny or debate in the last year or so since it was introduced. It is a matter of some concern to me that this Bill has come in somewhat under the radar. It represents a very significant change to the way in which agents in the ACT, particularly employment agents, are regulated in a way which I suspect many members of the industry do not appreciate.
Mr Speaker, there are three reasons I would ask members to oppose this legislation. One is a lack of consultation on the legislation. There is a very serious concern about the way in which this has been handled. The second is the cost it imposes on the industry, a cost which has not been justified in any way. The third is the most serious and important argument. There is potential for conflict between the position of the Commonwealth with respect to employment agents and the position of the ACT. An ACT law may conflict with the requirements of the Commonwealth with respect to the operation of employment agents.