Page 2276 - Week 06 - Wednesday, 9 May 2012

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These amendments make a series of changes to Mr Rattenbury’s bill. In particular, they affirm our support for including the title “sustainability” in the commissioner’s title and renaming the act, inserting objects about sustainability into the act and expanding the scope of state of the environment reporting to include sustainability issues. The government are not supporting other provisions and we are proposing that they be omitted from the bill, including provisions that would have required the commissioner to provide reports to the Speaker. We also are making a number of changes in relation to reporting dates, providing for reporting dates in terms of tabling of reports to be within six sitting days rather than the current 15 sitting days. I commend the amendments to the Assembly.

MR RATTENBURY (Molonglo) (5.26): As I alluded to in my earlier remarks, the Greens will be supporting these amendments. We think they ensure that the bill will go through and update the act in ways that it needs to be updated. As I flagged, I would like to have seen us go further. I think that having the Assembly have that more direct access to some of the work from the commissioner would have been better, but I think we have made progress here. We will now see more timely reporting to the Assembly, reducing the reporting period from 15 sitting days to six. This is more consistent with a range of other times we see in the Assembly and certainly is more helpful to the Assembly in seeing things in a more timely manner. The state of the environment report has been a recent example where it has taken a lot of time.

The other amendments are ones that we do agree with. I think there is a broader debate and a longer term one to be had about where the Commissioner for the Environment sits in the ACT governance structure. I would like to see it sit closer to the Assembly, similar in role to the Auditor-General. I think there is scope for the commissioner to play that more independent and more arms-length role from government where they can scrutinise the performance of the territory on both environment and sustainability matters. But that will be a discussion for another day. At this point, I again commend to the Assembly the legislation and the improvements that it makes.

Amendments agreed to.

Bill, as a whole, as amended, agreed to.

Bill, as amended, agreed to.

Australian National University School of Music

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (5.28): I move:

That this Assembly:

(1) notes the:

(a) role and reputation of the Australian National University (ANU) School of Music as a leading music educator;

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