Page 2741 - Week 09 - Thursday, 27 September 2007

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Thursday, 27 September 2007

The Assembly met at 10.30 am.

(Quorum formed.)

MR SPEAKER (Mr Berry) took the chair and asked members to stand in silence and pray or reflect on their responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Occupational Health and Safety (Regulatory Services) Legislation Amendment Bill 2007

Mr Corbell, pursuant to notice, presented the bill, its explanatory statement and a Human Rights Act compatibility statement.

Title read by Clerk.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (10.33): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

The Occupational Health and Safety (Regulatory Services) Legislation Amendment Bill 2007 completes stage 1 of the government’s budget commitment to consolidate and streamline the activities of various regulatory agencies across the ACT government. Stages 2 and 3, which I will bring forward next year, will comprehensively deal with the establishment of the Office of Regulatory Services by consolidating various laws which deal with overall governance of the new office, and principal legislation which regulates various ACT industries.

The establishment of a single, coordinated Office of Regulatory Services was announced in last year’s budget and brought together the regulatory activities associated with ACT WorkCover, the Office of Fair Trading, the Registrar-General’s Office, parking operations, tobacco licensing, charitable collections, outdoor cafes, and the Independent Competition and Regulatory Commission, to achieve economies of scale and remove unnecessary duplication of administrative costs across government.

Under the revised arrangements, occupational health and safety regulatory activities will be undertaken by the newly established Office of Regulatory Services within my department, the Department of Justice and Community Safety.

As part of the new accountability and reporting arrangements, the chief executive of my department will prepare a report on the exercise of her regulatory occupational health and safety responsibilities twice a year, which I will table in the Assembly. The first report will be the departmental annual report, which is tabled in September of each year, and the second report will be an interim report, which I will table in March of the following year.

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