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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 7 Hansard (26 June) . . Page.. 2602 ..


(5.03): I rise to support this motion-as I am aware that much of this legislation is indeed time critical-to ensure the continued smooth running of already existing legislation.

In particular, I am supportive of the change to the definition of company auditor. Without this change, it is difficult for businesses to fulfil their obligations, as there are only three or four firms in the ACT who have registered company auditors in accordance with the new federal company and securities act. This change will mean that, although wage declarations will still be subject to independent verification, it will be easier and less expensive to get this done within the required timeframe.

I am supportive of the extension of terrorism coverage, although I make the point that this does seem to be a bit of a band-aid approach. That is no fault of the government-it is something we have all been lumped with.

In my view, we need to accept that terrorism is here for longer than we would like it to be and that, as a result, the reinsurance industry may never come to the party. I can see us here in two years time-provided we are all re-elected-pushing through the same extension.

Ms MacDonald

: I think that is more uncertain!


: That is true. Perhaps we could think about trying to have a good talk with the insurance industry, in an endeavour to obtain a more permanent resolution of the problem, to bring certainty back to the business community and the community at large.

I am supportive of the recovery of claims amendments and the cross-border changes. I will go on to raise other interesting issues. Looking at the explanatory memorandum, I am a bit perplexed-perhaps because I am not very experienced in dealing with these matters. I notice we have an explanatory memorandum for this proposal today and yet, for the Revenue Legislation Amendment Bill 2003, we had an explanatory statement. Is there any difference between a memorandum and a statement?

Ms Gallagher

: No, there is not-it is a name.


: Is there a point here about consistency and protocol, perhaps, or am I being a bit too sweet? I drop that point on the table anyway. Otherwise, I have nothing further to add. We will push through and support the government on this. I have no other sweet comments to make.


(5.06): When we debated the Workers Compensation (Acts of Terrorism) Amendment Bill in June last year, I expressed grave reservations about that bill. This bill extends the scheme introduced by the act-and my concerns remain as valid as they were a year ago.

That bill made the ACT government the reinsurer for all insurance companies providing workers compensation coverage in the ACT, in the event that an act of terrorism occurs which results in workers compensation claims costing more than 5 per cent of the amount collected in workers compensation insurance premiums in one year. In effect,

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