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

Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 2 Hansard (21 February) . . Page.. 462 ..

MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

Mr Speaker, for the benefit of members-certainly the new members-the report the Speaker has just tabled is a consequence of the Assembly passing the Legislative Assembly (Broadcasting) Act 2001 in August of last year. That act provided that all proceedings of the Assembly and its committees can be broadcast subject to conditions agreed to by the Assembly.

The report contains draft conditions for the consideration of the Assembly. The act comes into effect on 10 March 2002, so the conditions will need to be a adopted in the next sitting week.

I draw members' attention to the fact that this is a reasonably significant change to the broadcasting arrangements for the Assembly, and we really need to ratify those conditions in the next sitting week so that they can take effect from 10 March.

The main difference between this and the previous act is that only those proceedings that in the opinion of the Speaker warranted broadcasting were authorised for broadcast. Under the new act all public proceedings of the Assembly and its committee can be broadcast.

The conditions contain the usual restrictions on the placement of cameras and the content of footage taken of Assembly proceedings. These conditions have been in place for some time-for example, the degree to which cameras can pan. We will make it not possible for them to pan the gallery, and they will not be able to pan members so that they will not catch members asleep or something along those lines. If a member is on his or her feet, the camera can fix on that member and, if another member is referred to in that delivery, that member can be fixed by the camera, but it will not be possible for cameras to look over the shoulder of members and zoom in on the papers that they have in front of them That is an example of the conditions contained in the report.

The report also proposes that the power to withdraw the rights to broadcast Assembly proceedings be delegated to the Speaker for Assembly proceedings and to each committee for committee proceedings. That means that a motion will need to be put by the committee. It is not in the hands of the committee chair; it is a joint decision by the committee.

Mr Speaker, as you well know because you put the report down, this is a change in the approach. We are saying that, in the interests of being available to the community, we will start from the perspective that Assembly proceedings and committee proceedings will be available to the public and that, if they are not, we will have to come up with a reason. I think that is a change for the better.

I commend this report to the Assembly and urge each member to closely read the report and bring forward suggestions to the Administration and Procedure Committee if necessary.

Debate (on motion by Mr Cornwell ) adjourned to the next sitting.

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