Page 2631 - Week 07 - Tuesday, 28 June 2011

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measures available, this would be an effective means of ensuring that clubs respond to concerns about directors and can prevent or limit any impropriety. The personal obligation and offence provisions that may be enlivened by the Corporations Law are a separate question which ultimately the commonwealth must choose to follow up on.

The Greens will not support this amendment. I believe that many members of clubs across Canberra would support a mechanism that ultimately protects them and their club from the actions of an individual who does not have the club’s best interests at heart.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (12.10): I will just make a final point on this issue about the inclusion of the directors’ obligation. Again I will quote some of the legal advice provided by the clubs:

The new clause 148A of the Bill replicates the provisions of section 181 of the Corps Act. While on the face of it this is not a problem in and of itself, taken together with sections 148B the Bill provides a very broad (and unspecified) scope for the Commission to make a direction to amend a club’s constitution without going to members with uncertain consequences.

By prescribing the director duties in the Bill the scope for intervention by the Commission is enormous and uncertain. For example, the provisions of 148B appear to give the Commission the power to, if they believe (on reasonable grounds) that a director is not acting in good faith consistent with section 148A, intervene to direct a club to remove the director without going to members.

It is also unclear how these provisions would sit alongside existing provisions of the Corps Act and the role of ASIC.

So again I think it is very important that where something is so uncertain—we have not seen the RIS, and I do not think the minister has spoken about the RIS and whether or not he will table it. And we have not seen the legal advice, and the minister has not spoken about it; it is quite clear that he is not going to table it, even though we have a new era of accountability and openness. And there lies the problem. We do not know what is prompting this. We do not know what is driving this. We do not know why this is required—because, quite simply, the government will not tell us. We should omit the clause until proper discussion has been had and potentially guidelines on how it will be used have been promulgated.

Question put:

That clause 20 be agreed to.

The Assembly voted—

Ayes 10

Noes 5

Mr Barr

Mr Hargreaves

Mr Coe

Mr Smyth

Dr Bourke

Ms Hunter

Mrs Dunne

Ms Bresnan

Ms Le Couteur

Mr Hanson

Ms Burch

Ms Porter

Mr Seselja

Mr Corbell

Mr Rattenbury

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