Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 1 Hansard (8 December) . . Page.. 4033 ..
The Assembly voted -
AYES, 9 NOES, 8 Ms Carnell Mr Berry Mr Cornwell Mr Corbell Mr Hird Mr Hargreaves Mr Humphries Mr Moore Mr Kaine Mr Quinlan Mr Osborne Mr Stanhope Mr Rugendyke Ms Tucker Mr Smyth Mr Wood Mr Stefaniak
Question so resolved in the affirmative.
Bill, as amended, agreed to.
MR SPEAKER: I remind members that earlier in the day we agreed to consider this order of the day concurrently with the Land (Planning and Environment) Legislation Amendment Bill 1999.
MR CORBELL (5.38), in reply: Mr Speaker, I indicate my thanks both to the Government and to crossbench members, obviously with the exception of Ms Tucker on this occasion, for their support of this Bill. This is an important Bill because for the first time since self-government - indeed, for the first time since the implementation of the Land Act - there will be clear criteria, publicly notified reasons, for the exercise of the ministerial call-in power. That is a significant step forward in providing for accountability, openness and transparency in the exercise of this important power.
Ms Tucker made some comments earlier in the debate today about the current Minister's use of the call-in power. I know that the Government and the Minister have indicated that the conditions I am outlining in this Bill are what the Government already does, so they are prepared to support it. Whilst it is true that the current Minister, Mr Smyth, has put out media statements alerting the community to his decision to exercise his call-in power, and has given at least some attempt at a reason, we may not always be so lucky. Under any legislation it is important that we do not have to rely on the favour or the whim of a Minister to find out why he or she has exercised this power.