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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 1 Hansard (13 December) . . Page.. 277 ..

MR HUMPHRIES: Of course; it goes without saying, Mr Corbell. Mr Speaker, I do not think we need to trust the bastards. I think that we should look to the circumstances in which future supplementary appropriations are produced. If one is produced that does not provide the information which members seek, it is not possible for an estimates committee to be held and the Assembly as a whole feels that it is being taken for a ride, I think it would be appropriate to come back to this amendment. I indicate to Ms Dundas that we would support it if there was any evidence that information was being kept back.

At the moment, though, there is a point to the argument that it would be a burden to impose this condition in all circumstances as it may be that at very short notice there will be a need for such a bill to be passed. In those circumstances, we will not support the amendment.

Amendment negatived.

Clause 4 agreed to.

Clause 5 agreed to.

Proposed new clause 6.

MS DUNDAS (6.05): I move amendment No 2 circulated in my name [see schedule 1 at page 287].

Mr Speaker, this amendment relates to the Treasurer's Advance. I do take the point that the current regime creates problems for the Treasurer in using this advance. However, once again, the Democrats believe that this bill goes further than necessary in fixing a problem.

I have been advised that the Treasurer's Advance may total more than $15 million, an amount that governments need to be held to account for. Expenditure under the Treasurer's Advance is discretionary and currently no details of such expenditure need to be given to the Assembly until after the end of the financial year. Because of this, I believe that, if the government wishes to pass a supplementary appropriation, it should first table details of the use of the Treasurer's Advance in the intervening period. This will allow the Assembly to form a clear picture of the government's financial management when it is considering further appropriations. I commend this amendment to the Assembly and hope that members can see the benefits of such a process for accountability.

MR QUINLAN (Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Business and Tourism, Minister for Sport, Racing and Gaming and Minister for Police, Emergency Services and Corrections) (6.06): Mr Speaker, the government has no problem with accepting this amendment.


(Leader of the Opposition) (6.07): Similarly, the opposition supports the amendment. I think that there was an argument in regard to subsequent appropriation bills about how much was being put into the second appropriation, how much was being put into the Treasurer's Advance, and why we did not have more information about that. It seems that this might solve that problem. If it does not, we can come back and do

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