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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 1 Hansard (14 February) . . Page.. 143 ..

Questions without notice

Act-of-grace payments

MR HUMPHRIES: Yesterday, Mr Quinlan asked me about the instruments by which a delegation existed for act-of-grace payments to parties. Delegations are made under section 64 of the Financial Management Act. They are delegations within the Department of the Treasury. The Chief Executive and Deputy Under Treasurer has a monetary limit of $5 million for authorisation. The Director of Budget Management has a limit of $50,000. The Director of Revenue Management has a $5,000 limit.

I table that instrument. I present the following paper:

Administration Act-Schedule of delegations for Act of Grace payments-Answer to question without notice asked of Mr Humphries by Mr Quinlan and taken on notice on 13 February 2001.

I am surprised that Mr Quinlan asked for it because he actually asked for it a year ago and I gave it to him a year ago; anyway, there it is again. Mr Speaker, the act-of-grace payment to Deutsche Bank was a payment made pursuant to a delegation to the Under Treasurer and did not involve the Treasurer.

Personal explanations

MR BERRY: I seek leave to make a statement under standing order 46, Mr Speaker. I claim to have been misrepresented.


: Please proceed.

MR BERRY: During question time, Mr Humphries made certain claims about a press release which he said that I had issued in relation to unemployment. He said that I had claimed that unemployment had risen by 0.3 per cent, when it had been by 0.1 per cent. Mr Speaker, the most recent press release that I issued on the matter was released on 8 February. It made the point that 8,500 Canberrans were unemployed, up from 8,100 in October-that is, 400 more were seeking employment-and we had a thousand 15 to 19-year-olds looking for full-time work, but there were 600 fewer full-time jobs in January.

It is well known that after a time lag from a fall in job ads unemployment worsens. The ACT job ads have been falling for six months and for the fourth month full-time jobs have fallen. We now have 1,900 fewer full-time jobs than we had in September 2000. In future, if Mr Humphries is answering a dorothy dixer in relation to my press releases, I wish he would be truthful.

MR SPEAKER: Thank you; you have made your personal explanation.

MR BERRY: Mr Speaker, I seek leave to table the press release.

Leave granted.

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