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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 8 Hansard (7 August) . . Page.. 2438 ..

MR HIRD (continuing):

I thank the officers of PALM, in particular Dr Cooper, and I would also like to thank my two colleagues, Mr Corbell and Mr Rugendyke, as well as our Secretary, Mr Power. I do thank the residents of Mawson and the surrounding districts who came and gave up their time, as I indicated earlier in my statement, to assist the committee in its deliberations on this matter. These decisions are not taken lightly. This is a unanimous decision by the committee. In closing, I also thank other members for their assistance in this matter, in particular, Mr Cornwell.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

Justice and Community Safety-Standing Committee

Scrutiny Report No 10 of 2001

MR OSBORNE: I present the following report:

Justice and Community Safety-Standing Committee (incorporating the duties of a Scrutiny of Bills and Subordinate Legislation Committee)-Scrutiny Report No 10 of 2001, dated 2 August 2001

I ask for leave to make a statement.

Leave granted.

MR OSBORNE: Scrutiny Report No 10 of 2001 contains the committee's comments on 20 bills, 10 subordinate laws and three government responses dealing with eight matters. Mr Speaker, the report was circulated, I believe, last week. It contains quite a detailed response from our legal adviser on the Crimes Amendment Bill. I imagine that members would have had a look at it, but I encourage those who have not to take the time to read it. I commend the report to the Assembly.

Legislative Assembly (Members' Staff) Amendment Bill 2000

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

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR BERRY (11.25): Mr Speaker, Labor will be opposing the Legislative Assembly (Members' Staff) Amendment Bill 2000. This bill seeks to limit the rights of members staff-that is, staff members who have been employed by members and who hold positions in the ACT public service-especially when they are reintegrated into the public service.

Mr Speaker, if you have a look at the act you will see that the Merit Protection Review Agency has a particular role to play, and the rights of employees are guaranteed. Under this Merit Protection Review Agency process the relevant unions are involved in any review which takes place in relation to the reintegration of officers into the ACT public service after a period of employment with a member of this Assembly. What the government is seeking to do is put in place another process which rules out the involvement of relevant unions. We feel that this will limit the rights available to members and the independence of the integration process.

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