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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2000 Week 12 Hansard (7 December) . . Page.. 3925 ..

MR HUMPHRIES (Chief Minister, Minister for Community Affairs, Attorney - General and Treasurer) (9.52): Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker, I move the following amendment circulated in my name:

Clause 2, page 2, line 3, subclause (2), omit the subclause, substitute the following subclause:

"(2) Section 4 is taken to have commenced on 1 November 2000.".

I present the supplementary explanatory memorandum to the amendment. The effect of this amendment is fairly simple. It is to ensure that these changes take place from 1 November this year. Members might recall that we passed the Goods and Services Tax (Temporary Transitional Provisions) Act earlier this year, which allowed adjustments to be made pursuant to the advent of the GST. The effect of that legislation ended on 31 October. It was the intention of the government originally to enact the provisions taking up on a permanent basis the changes to be made post - GST. But, of course, the October sittings were somewhat disrupted. As coverage under the legislation has not applied for some weeks it is appropriate that the benefits conferred by this bill be backdated to 1 November. Therefore the amendment is of a retrospective nature.

MR QUINLAN (9.54): Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker, that is a fairly plausible explanation for a sloppy bit of work in getting this legislation through, but we will nevertheless support the amendment.

Amendment agreed to.

Bill, as a whole, as amended, agreed to.

Bill, as amended, agreed to.


Debate resumed from 18 October 2000, on motion by Mr Humphries:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR QUINLAN (9.55): We will be supporting the Rates and Land Rent (Relief) Amendment Bill 2000. The primary change proposed in the bill is the extension of the definition of "pensioner" in the Rates and Land Rent (Relief) Act to include those who receive benefits by holding a Department of Veterans' Affairs gold card. This will mean that anyone who served in the Second World War will be entitled to rates relief. The recent removal of the requirement by the Commonwealth that to receive a gold card you had to have seen active service means that many forgotten veterans are now able to receive some return in their old age for service that they gave during what was no doubt a very troubling time.

The remainder of the proposed changes to the act seek to make the language of the legislation more contemporary and modern, and we therefore support them.

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