Page 4724 - Week 15 - Tuesday, 13 December 2005

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I am sure all members would concede that the statute law amendment process is an efficient mechanism to effect non-controversial, minor or technical amendments to several pieces of legislation in this territory while minimising the resources that would be required if those amendments were dealt with individually. Every amendment is minor but when the amendments are viewed collectively it is apparent that they contribute significantly to improving the operation of affected legislation.

Amendments to the Administrative Decisions (Judicial Review) Act 1989, which are technical in nature, include the updating of language, the breaking up of several complex provisions into smaller ones and the restructuring of schedules to improve the accessibility of users to this important act. Similarly, amendments to the Legislation Act 2001 will ensure that the overall structure of the statute book is cohesive and consistent and kept up to date with best practice. Amendments to provisions about working out time periods are intended to create greater clarity than does the operation of the statute book. That will lead to a better understanding of how the time for statutory provisions is worked out.

I again express ongoing appreciation for members continuing support for the technical amendments program. That is another example of the territory leading the way and striving for the best; in this case, a modern, high-quality, up-to-date and easily accessible statute book. I also take this opportunity to congratulate the Office of Parliamentary Counsel. All members would be aware of the enormous workload that is carried by that office. We are demanding in the instructions we issue and the amount of legislation that is produced by this parliament.

However, I am always mindful of the enormous amount of professionalism that exists in the Office of Parliamentary Counsel and the work that it does in relation to bills such as this and other omnibus legislation that is produced and debated from time to time. I take this opportunity to acknowledge sincerely the level of detail demanded of and the attention to detail provided by the Office of Parliamentary Council in relation to the Statute Law Amendment Bill. Legislation such as this does not generate much debate because it is non-controversial and very technical.

However, because legislation is non-controversial and it does not elicit much debate, it might deny the quite detailed drafting work and precision required continually to update it. That level of work has been reflected in the Statute Law Amendment Bill. Legislation that goes through this Assembly with less debate than other legislation nevertheless can be incredibly complex and demanding for the Office of Parliamentary Counsel. I take this opportunity to acknowledge its skill, its professionalism, and the work that it does for us all. I thank members for their support for this bill.

Bill agreed to in principle.

Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.

Bill agreed to.

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