Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 7 Hansard (6 June) . . Page.. 2075 ..
MR QUINLAN (Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Business and Tourism, Minister for Sport, Racing and Gaming and Minister for Police, Emergency Services and Corrections) (6.17), in reply: Mr Speaker, I thank members for their support. I thank Ms Dundas for once again advising us of our shortcomings. I will not labour the point any further, because there will be discussion on the amendments at the detail stage, and I am acutely aware that we need to complete our business by 7 o'clock this evening.
Question resolved in the affirmative
Bill agreed to in principle.
Detail stageClauses 1 to 5, by leave, taken together and agreed to.
MS DUNDAS (6.18): I move the amendment circulated in my name [see schedule 1 at page 2085].
My amendment addresses the three shortcomings that I identified in my speech at the in-principle stage. This amendment, if accepted, will enable sporting organisations to enjoy a benefit from the day the amendment comes into force. The amendment defines a class of exempt sporting organisations which takes in only those organisations that actually need a duty concession, and the amendment improves accountability by requiring the tabling of the names of all exempted organisations which do not fit in within the defined classes of exempt community organisations or exempt sporting organisations. I do not see this as another ream of paperwork for this Assembly but more as an accountability check.
My amendment proposes that the minister be granted a discretion to develop guidelines specifying which additional types of organisation may, rather than must, be exempted from duty and that the minister be required to name the exempted organisations in a notifiable instrument so that the Assembly is aware of how the ministerial discretion is being exercised. Again, this is not a huge burden on the government but more an accountability measure so we are always aware of who is being exempted and who is being granted the ability to save money. This is a very important part of my amendment. Even though we may have faith in the government to do the right thing, it may not always be that way. We need to be aware of who the government believes is worthy of exemptions from duty.
As I have mentioned, a benefit of my proposal is that it would grant immediate duty exemptions to sporting organisations that fit the definition I have proposed. I believe that my proposed definition would catch the cash strapped organisations that depend wholly on participant fees but exclude organisations that have substantial sponsorship revenue or other revenue from non-sporting activities. I have consulted widely in the development of this definition. I have consulted parliamentary counsel but also sporting organisations throughout the ACT on what they believe would be the best definition.