Page 412 - Week 01 - Thursday, 17 February 2011

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(1) What is the cost of legal advice in the Minister’s portfolio to date in 2010-11 and to which department or agency does this apply.

(2) What proportion is this of the 2010-11 Budget for legal advice for each department or agency in the portfolio.

(3) What was the purpose of the legal advice that has been received.

(4) How much of this has been for legal advice directly related to court cases.

(5) How much legal advice has been (a) used for the development of legislation and (b) provided ‘in-kind’.

Mr Stanhope: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) The Government Solicitor provides legal services free of charge to most agencies, including the Department of Territory and Municipal Services. Details of the Government Solicitor’s funding are found in the Territory’s Budget Paper for 2010-11.

The Government Solicitor bills ACT Procurement Solutions for the provision of legal services. The pro rata cost to ACT Procurement Solutions for legal advice provided by the Government Solicitor for the period 1 July 2010 to 9 December 2010 is approximately $70,000. The cost to Procurement Solutions for external legal advice for the same period was $25,722.

(2) TAMS has no specific budget for legal advice.

(3) Legal advice is received on a range of matters.

(4) It is not practical to disaggregate advice relating to court cases from the total legal advice provided, as the focus of advice on a particular issue may change over time (eg commence as not relating to a court case, related to a court case, relate to negotiation).

(5) (a) It is not practical to readily identify legal advice relating to the development of legislation. Advice of this kind may come from the Government Solicitor, Parliamentary Counsel, agency policy staff or specialist agencies.

(b) It is not clear what ‘provided in-kind’ is intended to include.

Government—media and communications advisers
(Question Nos 1351, 1354, 1357 and 1360)

Mr Seselja asked the Chief Minister, the Minister for Business and Economic Development, the Minister for Industrial Relations and the Minister for Arts and Heritage, upon notice, on 8 December 2010 (Question No 1360 redirected to the Chief Minister):

(1) How many staff are employed as media advisers or communications advisers in each department and agency in the Minister’s portfolio.

(2) What is the average salary of each staff referred to in part (1).

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