Page 3658 - Week 10 - Tuesday, 26 August 2008

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This provision is amended to provide clearer language about the fact that a witness is not to be cross-examined at committal unless a successful application is made to the court. This is an important element of the committal reform process which I outlined earlier in the debate, in the in-principle stage.

Amendments agreed to.

Amendment 1.77, as amended, agreed to.

Amendments 1.78 to 1.83, by leave, taken together and agreed to.

Amendment 1.84 agreed to.

Amendments 1.85 to 1.96, by leave, taken together and agreed to.

Amendment 1.97 agreed to.

Remainder of bill, by leave, taken as a whole and agreed to.

Bill, as amended, agreed to.

Legal Affairs—Standing Committee

Report 8

MR STEFANIAK (Ginninderra) (5.50): I present the following report:

Legal Affairs—Standing Committee—Report 8 (2 volumes)—ACT Fire and Emergency Services Arrangements, dated 22 August 2008, including dissenting reports and additional comments (Mr Stefaniak, Ms MacDonald), together with a copy of the extracts of the relevant minutes of proceedings

I move:

That the report be noted.

This inquiry was a crucially important inquiry by an Assembly committee, and it certainly had the potential to give some very clear directions as to what should occur in the future to fireproof the ACT as far as humanly possible. The report makes a number of recommendations that certainly assist in that regard. But, I do regret to say that, in my view, my committee colleagues did baulk at making some other recommendations that I think were clearly warranted as a result of the volume of evidence and the opinion put before the committee.

I do not think the committee was as well served as it could have been by the government. Firstly, we had the Chief Minister refusing to appear, despite being requested to on some two occasions. We also have had difficulty in obtaining some documents from JACS as well. Also, as is referred to in the report, we had the minister refusing to allow two officers to answer questions on 20 June, which is

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