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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 1 Hansard (8 December) . . Page.. 3992 ..

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, as I said yesterday, this is not a matter for the Executive or for the Minister. It is a matter, and rightly so, for the Commissioner for Public Administration, and that is exactly where it would have stayed. As the information I tabled yesterday shows, there was not, and should not have been, any direction or any requirement for approval from any of the relevant Ministers or from me for these sorts of issues. Public sector employment issues are not issues for Ministers. It is that simple.

Mr Corbell: Are you responsible for the administration or not?

MS CARNELL: If Mr Corbell is suggesting that Ministers should run the Public Service directly - that is, be the employer - then he should stand up and say that, because it totally undermines - - -

Mr Corbell: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. Is the Chief Minister the Minister responsible for the Public Service or not? How long will you allow her to hide behind this false veil that she is not responsible for answering questions on Public Service matters? It is a load of nonsense, and you should direct the Chief Minister to answer the question.

MR SPEAKER: There is no point of order.

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, was that the supplementary question? I assume it was. It was not a point of order; it was obviously a supplementary question. Mr Speaker, I ask you to rule on whether that was a supplementary question. It was a question.

MR SPEAKER: No, it is not a supplementary question.

MS CARNELL: I do not know how you can have a point of order that was a question, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: It was not a valid point of order. I overruled the point of order.

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, I make the point but again. The issue of public sector employment is not an issue for Ministers, nor should it be.

Mr Corbell: You are a coward, Chief Minister.

Mr Stefaniak: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. That is highly unparliamentary. I would ask that the member withdraw.

MR SPEAKER: I warn you, Mr Corbell.

Mr Berry: What for, Mr Speaker?

MR SPEAKER: Under standing order 202, for persistently and wilfully disregarding the authority of the Chair. That will do. I warn you, Mr Corbell.

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