Page 335 - Week 01 - Thursday, 27 February 2014

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We consider that an appropriate balance is needed between the disclosure of communications that might influence decision-making, and ensuring that participation in democratic processes is not deterred by an erosion of crucial protections.

I think that is the nub of the issue, that there is some argument for a lobbyist register for the executive. Ultimately, the executive control the decisions and the expenditure. The function of the other members of parliament is important, but clearly we are not in a position where we can make decisions that have such influence on government policy. We do not make ministerial decisions. We are not making appropriations and so on.

I think it is important that this matter be looked at in more detail. I think that the admin and procedures committee is in a position to do that. I support Mr Coe’s amendment, which just gives the admin and procedures committee a little more time, because there are a lot of complex issues and no doubt there are issues that have not yet been canvassed in this place that will arise as the committee does further work on it.

The opposition is very happy to refer this to the admin and procedures committee to have a look at the issue. We always want to make sure that when we and the government, particularly the executive, are doing their business, they are doing so in an ethical and open way and are free from any inappropriate, or suggestion of inappropriate, influence, be it from lobbyists or anyone else. If a lobbyist register could be shown to support that then that would be a good thing. But we do not, in the process, essentially want to encumber all members of parliament or the executive to a point where it is then an interference in the normal course of business that we conduct. We will be supporting the motion as amended by Mr Rattenbury and by Mr Coe.

Amendment to proposed amendment agreed to.

Amendment, as amended, agreed to.

Motion, as amended, agreed to.

(Quorum formed.)

Nature Conservation Bill—exposure draft


MS LAWDER (Brindabella) (5.01): I seek leave to amend my notice by omitting “Nature Conservation Bill” and inserting “exposure draft of the Nature Conservation Bill”, twice occurring.

Leave granted.

I move the amended motion:

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