Page 80 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 9 December 2008

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Crimes Legislation Amendment Bill 2008, dated 5 September 2008.

Protection of Public Participation Bill 2008, dated 8 and 9 September 2008.

Sexual and Violent Offences Legislation Amendment Bill 2008, dated 5 September 2008.

Tobacco Amendment Bill 2008, dated 11 September 2008.

Unit Titles Amendment Bill 2008, dated 5 and 9 September 2008.

ACT Labor-Greens Parliamentary Agreement

Paper and statement by minister

MR STANHOPE (Ginninderra—Chief Minister, Minister for Transport, Minister for Territory and Municipal Services, Minister for Business and Economic Development, Minister for Indigenous Affairs and Minister for the Arts and Heritage): For the information of members, I present the following paper:

Parliamentary Agreement—For the 7th Legislative Assembly for the ACT—Agreement between Mr Jon Stanhope, Leader of the Australian Labor Party, ACT Branch and Ms Meredith Hunter, Parliamentary Convenor of the ACT Greens, dated 31 October 2008

I ask leave to make a statement in relation to the paper.

Leave granted.

MR STANHOPE: I am pleased to table the parliamentary agreement for the Seventh Assembly between the government and the ACT Greens. It sets out the commitment of both our parties to work cooperatively in the best interests of the people of the ACT. It echoes and reiterates Labor’s previously stated commitments regarding engagement, transparency, openness and accountability.

The agreement will see changes made to a number of existing Assembly procedures and practices. Some of these reflect the reality of minority government. Others are reflections of a maturing legislature, a parliament that may be small but which has led the field often before and will do so again when it comes to meeting the needs of the community it serves.

We have flexibility and also a willingness to innovate and our size gives us the capacity to move swiftly. Let us remember that minority government has been the rule, rather than the exception, in this city. Minority government focuses the mind on creative solutions—creative ways to ensure that the executive can still effectively govern and that momentum is maintained on important issues.

Arguably some of the most significant aspects of the agreement are those relating to roles of Assembly committees, including reforms that will allow committees to be better informed of executive decisions and better able to contribute ideas and comments to decision-making processes.

Other aspects of the agreement affect the direct functioning of the Assembly, the times of sitting and improving the accessibility of government information and

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