Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 6 Hansard (15 June) . . Page.. 1833 ..

MR CORBELL (continuing):

the government has missed in this regard is that the decision as to which award it should be should not be a decision of the Assembly at all. That is the point Mr Berry is making. The point Mr Berry is making is that the union, the Media, Entertainment and Arts Alliance, has taken a dispute to the commission, arguing that the commission should decide which award should be used in determining the no-disadvantage test. The union has argued that it should be the journalists award. This government, though, is attempting to set which award should be used for the no-disadvantage test. That is not appropriate. That should not be happening.

The government is wrong on those three counts. There is a dispute, but the dispute has not progressed because its progression is pending the outcome of our vote today. The issue of which award should be used for the no-disadvantage test should not be determined by this government; it should be determined by the Industrial Relations Commission, but the government is trying to override that by attempting to set what the award should be. Thirdly, it is inappropriate for the government to argue that members should be the employers. The territory is the employer. We act as agents of the employer, the territory. Those are the three reasons why the disallowance motion should be supported today. They are clear and straightforward. Mr Rugendyke, you have not been misled; you have not had misrepresentations made to you. Those are the facts of the matter. I urge you to continue with your support. This matter should be appropriately addressed by the commission, not pre-empted by the regulations the government will put in place today if this disallowance motion is not supported.

MR KAINE (11.44): I wish I could be so confident of the facts as Mr Corbell just outlined them. Unfortunately, I am in the same boat as Mr Rugendyke. I have no industrial relations advice available to me. I do not have banks of lawyers and industrial relations experts lining up to tell me what are the facts in this case. Quite frankly, I do not know what the facts are, and Mr Corbell did not convince me on that.

Like Mr Rugendyke, I was inclined to support Mr Berry's move this morning because it had been put to me in very simplistic terms. It was put along the lines that this is an argument about which union's award ought to apply, that the government ought not to be determining that. It is clearly far more complex than that. On the points that Mr Corbell made, I am by no means clear and I am by no means satisfied that the argument that he put to us stated the facts. First of all, he said that there is a dispute. I am not aware that any member of my staff is in dispute with anybody. They are not in dispute with me. Who is in dispute with whom and over what issues? I know of no such dispute. Is it a fact that there is a dispute? If there is one, it is not known to me. If my staff members like to come to me at any time today and say to me that they are in dispute and want this matter resolved, I would be interested to hear it, but no-one has done so up till now.

The second "fact" that Mr Corbell put to us is that some staff will be disadvantaged. Which ones. I have no knowledge of any disadvantage that will accrue to any staff member of mine by virtue of the Chief Minister's determinations and nobody has attempted during the debate so far to outline what those disadvantages are or to whom they will apply. Fact No 2 seems to be a little bit fuzzy around the edges, as is fact No 1.

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . .