Page 1327 - Week 05 - Tuesday, 5 April 2005

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is completely different. The question was specific and went to evidence given before a committee and was based on that evidence.

Mr Smyth: And evidence in this place that has been heard before committees has been the subject of questions. Is this a public matter? It is out there on the record. It was broadcast by the Assembly. I understand the transcript is now available on the Assembly website. It is a matter that can be discussed everywhere but not in the Assembly. It seems illogical that you cannot ask this question.

MR SPEAKER: Your question referred to proceedings in the committee. It, therefore, falls foul of the standing orders. You referred to the proceedings in the committee, and you cannot do that.

Mr Smyth: I appreciate what you say, Mr Speaker. I could quote back examples on, for instance, the Williamsdale quarry in the last Assembly where evidence was given—

MR SPEAKER: You can rephrase your question if you wish, but I think, in the form that you have put it, it just does not stand scrutiny in the context of the standing orders.

MR SMYTH: My question to the minister is: were there any claims from the ACT department of health that were not notified to the ACT Insurance Authority in time for that claim to be covered by our insurance policies?

MR CORBELL: I will take the substantive part of the question on notice. I will need to find out what the numbers are. The issue that, I think, members need to be aware of is that there is a difference between claims and notification of potential claims.

Mr Quinlan has just passed me a copy of the relevant Hansard. Without alluding to the proceedings of the committee, it would appear that the discussion was around notification of incidents that may lead to claim. That does not mean a claim has been made and received by the territory. It does mean that the hospital is obligated to advise the insurance authority of the potential for claim. That, I think, is the matter Mr Smyth is asking about. I will find out the circumstances to which he has alluded to see whether they are accurate and provide that information to the Assembly.

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, the supplementary is—and I assume the minister will take this on notice as well: can you find out what number of potential claims were not notified to the insurance authority, what years they came from and what potential liability this puts the ACT Treasury under?

MR CORBELL: Yes, I will need to take that question on notice. Again, I want to stress that the issue of the notification of incidents that may lead to claim is, I understand, a requirement of our re-insurance policy. The insurance authority is required to be made aware of any potential incidents of claim within a particular period of time. I will take the substantive part of Mr Smyth’s question on notice and provide that information to him at a later date.

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