Page 3435 - Week 11 - Wednesday, 21 September 2005

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motion is about a related subject matter, it does not purport to pre-empt or in any way presuppose the outcome of that committee investigation.

Further, Mr Speaker, it is worth noting that a substantial part of this motion also deals with issues that are current in the federal parliament at the moment, are matters of public debate, as you would know, and are reasonable to debate in this place. I do not believe that there is any pre-emption in terms of the matter referred to the select committee.

MR SPEAKER: May I just make a few observations. There may be some confusion about debate on these issues and standing order 117 (e) (ii), which relates to questions. It makes clear that questions in the Assembly cannot refer to proceedings in committee not reported to the Assembly. That standing order cannot be applied to general debate in the Assembly. It is not the intention of the standing orders, in my view, to stifle debate about particular matters because a committee is hearing a matter. For example, when the estimates committee is considering the budget, there is still much debate about budgetary issues. The consideration of health matters by the health committee does not shut down debate in this place about matters related to health.

I have just had a look at the motion and the issue of whether or not the federal government has introduced the legislation is not particularly relevant. I think, Mrs Dunne, that the member is entitled to introduced this sort of motion, but you have to be careful in the scheme of things that you are not trying to prod the committee to form a particular view about a particular matter under its consideration in the course of debate, that is, that you are not directing the committee to do certain things or attempting to direct the committee to do certain things. I think that the motion is in order.

Industrial relations

MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella) (11.08): I move:

That this Assembly:

(1) notes:

(a) the Federal Government’s intention to introduce new industrial relations laws as soon as October 2005 into the Federal Parliament;

(b) the complete failure of the Federal Government to consult with State and Territory Governments over the content of the proposed laws;

(c) that the proposed laws once passed will have immediate impact on working people in the ACT; and

(d) the considerable community concern over the impact of proposed laws particularly in relation to the:

(i) protection of family friendly working conditions;

(ii) protection from unfair dismissals;

(iii) protection of penalty rates, public holidays and leave entitlements; and

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