Page 1283 - Week 04 - Thursday, 10 April 2008
I would mention an area where I have some difficulty and where I think the opposition has some difficulty. I do not know that there is enough detail as to exactly how it would work in practice for us to be able to support it. I flag that I will move an amendment, but I am conscious of the legal advice which Mr Berry tabled, which I have not had a chance to read, in relation to whether it should be put into a piece of legislation or not.
My amendment will look at putting it in legislation, but this could just as easily be set out in another form. The principle that we are moving in this amendment is that we should know in more detail the role of the ethics and integrity adviser; the way in which the ethics and integrity adviser might conduct his or her duties; the manner of appointment and dismissal of the ethics and integrity adviser; remuneration, if necessary, of the ethics and integrity adviser; and any other relevant matters. In a moment I will move that amendment.
We are interested in knowing what kind of resources would be needed. Presumably, as Dr Foskey touched on, it would not be a full-time position. What kind of part time are we talking about? We have been keen to see more resources for the Assembly in other areas, particularly for the secretariat and the committees. Having served on the planning and environment committee and the legal affairs committee, I have seen the under-resourcing of committees over a period of time. It always seems too hard to get more resources so that committees can actually do the work that the legislation says they should do. That would be an important increase in the Assembly’s resources.
So before we would support this we would like to see what kind of resources would be associated with it and see some more detail on how it would operate. That is why I will now move my amendment, which has not yet been circulated but which will be circulated now. I move:
Omit all words after “Speaker”, substitute: “to present as soon as possible a Bill for an Act for the appointment of an Ethics and Integrity Adviser for Members of the ACT Legislative Assembly which sets out inter alia:
(1) the role of the Ethics and Integrity Adviser;
(2) the way in which the Ethics and Integrity Adviser might conduct his/her duties;
(3) the manner of appointment and dismissal Ethics and Integrity Adviser;
(4) remuneration (if necessary) of the Ethics and Integrity Adviser; and
(5) any other relevant matter.
I will talk on the amendment a little bit more while it is being circulated. The amendment substitutes words after “Speaker”, I believe; I do not have it in front of me any more. It talks about having a bill which would set out all the things that I have just mentioned. As I say, it is not tied to it being a bill. If Mr Berry’s advice is that that would not be appropriate for this model of integrity adviser, I would be happy for that