Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 09 Hansard (Thursday, 21 August 2008) . . Page.. 3419 ..
Mr Smyth, that is why Mr Seselja cannot participate in the debate, and neither can Ms Porter.
Mr Smyth: What about the people who employ—
MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER (Mr Gentleman): Order, Mr Smyth!
MR BERRY: Mr Assistant Speaker, protect me from this constant interjector. That makes the point very well as to why a person’s close family members ought not be employed in this place, but it also makes the very valid point that what the Liberals intend to do is open it up at the first opportunity. That is what this Assembly needs to be protected against.
Mr Mulcahy, my colleague and a member of the administration and procedure committee, made the point during our deliberations that plenty of family companies and so on have worked very successfully by employing family members.
Mr Mulcahy: So do unions.
MR BERRY: And so do unions, but they are not spending public money, Mr Mulcahy. You do not seem to get that there is a difference.
Mr Mulcahy: I think I get it very well.
MR BERRY: I do not think you get it at all.
MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER: Mr Berry, direct your comments through the chair.
MR BERRY: There is a difference between public money and other money. You just do not get it. Your move to try and remove—
Mr Mulcahy: On a point of order, Mr Assistant Speaker: if he has got a point of view, I suggest he run it through the chair.
MR ASSISTANT SPEAKER: Thank you very much, Mr Mulcahy. If you would stop interjecting, he probably would. Mr Berry, direct your comments through the chair.
MR BERRY: Mr Mulcahy’s position is very clear: he wants the sorts of activities that occur in private business to start occurring in this Assembly. You read them as headlines in the newspaper. Would you want your legislature with those sorts of activities peppered through its administrative structures? I think not.
Mr Smyth made quite a point out of asking the question of where it will end. It will end, Mr Smyth, with the dictionary, because that is what the legislation says. You are a legislator, and you know that is where it will end—unless you amend it. It goes through a range of family members who will be prohibited, and that is as far as it goes. My advice when I was putting together this piece of legislation was that the scope of persons mentioned in the bill is adequate and covers the field. It is true that it does not