Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 19 August 2008) . . Page.. 3280 ..
and do thoroughly, and we are flying blind. I will support a motion by the opposition leader to defer this. I know it will go down on the count, but in the event that that fails, I will be interested to hear about not only the nature of the amendments and an explanation of what they entail, but also why this has been handled in such an eleventh hour, sloppy, rushed fashion.
I am being asked about other things that we are told are about to be enacted. I am being lobbied to support changes to the implementations act because regulations are not ready on third-party matters. It is no way to run an administration. We are not talking here about the Yass council, where there might be half-a-dozen people in the back office who do the paperwork. We have an administration here which employs some 15,000 people, and we can’t get our act together sufficiently to have regulations brought before this place and give members time to consider them. It is an indictment of the management of the legislative program. There is no nice way to put it. I do not like having to express it in these terms, but it is an annoyance that things are left, and this is not the only illustration. I let many of them go through to the keeper.
I hope that those in the administration of this territory government that are listening to the comments that have been made this afternoon by Mr Seselja and me do get the message. Ministers accept responsibility, but at the end of the day, the people behind the scenes have to respect the fact that this is where the laws of the ACT are passed. Frankly, if people can’t get their act together in time to let them be properly considered by the legislature, the government should be sending back a message saying, “You’ve left your run too late; if you can’t get organised in a sufficient time then these matters will have to be left over,” and we will then await the electoral outcome on 18 October to see what kind of arrangements are in place for governing this territory.
DR FOSKEY (Molonglo) (6.30): This is very important, significant and far-reaching legislation. It is a fundamental change to one of our means of doing justice in the territory. There are three arms of government—the Assembly, the executive and the courts, and the government is changing one of those arms in the sense that tribunals are part of our justice system. Therefore, I cannot help but endorse the remarks made by my colleagues in the Liberal Party and by Mr Mulcahy that the legislation is just too important to rush. We were delivered today a new bunch of amendments, and there is no way that my staff could get through them. I do not know about anyone else’s staff. Although I do not think there are any concerns with this bill, I have to emphasise that it is the case that I do not think there are concerns with this bill. There are not significant concerns with those bits my staff have been able to look at in detail, but to extrapolate from that that there are no concerns with the whole bill is asking a lot of people who take seriously their job as being the eyes and ears of the community. In that sense, I certainly support a deferral of the debate, and I wait to see whether that is heard by the government.
These laws follow the jurisdictions of New South Wales and Victoria by creating a so-called super tribunal. Those states have experienced different levels of satisfaction and efficiency with their new tribunal bodies. The differential in performance has apparently been a reflection of the degree of solid and, hopefully, bipartisan political will driving their implementation and consolidation. Factors that have been identified