Page 3818 - Week 12 - Thursday, 29 October 2015

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Schedule 3 includes amendments of acts and regulations that have been reviewed as part of an ongoing program of updating and improving the language and form of legislation. These amendments are explained in the explanatory notes and are routine and technical matters such as the correction of minor errors, improving syntax and omitting redundant provisions.

In particular, Madam Speaker, amendments are made in schedule 3 to various pieces of legislation to reflect changes made by the Customs and Other Legislation Amendment (Australian Border Force) Act 2015 of the Commonwealth. For example, references to the “Australian Customs Service” have been changed to the “Department of Immigration and Border Protection (Cwlth)” and the “chief executive officer of Australian Customs and Border Protection Service” has become the “Comptroller-General of Customs”.

Finally, Madam Speaker, in addition to the explanatory notes in the bill, the parliamentary counsel of course remains available to provide any further explanation or information that members seek. I commend the bill to the Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Hanson) adjourned to the next sitting.

Courts Legislation Amendment Bill 2015 (No 2)

Mr Corbell, pursuant to notice, presented the bill, its explanatory statement and a Human Rights Act compatibility statement.

Title read by Clerk.

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Deputy Chief Minister, Attorney-General, Minister for Health, Minister for the Environment and Minister for Capital Metro) (10.41): I move:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

I am pleased to present this bill this morning. The bill continues this government’s good record of introducing amendments that will make practical improvements to the operation of the ACT’s court and tribunal system. It reinforces the government’s ongoing commitment to both achieving efficiencies and improving access to justice for citizens of Canberra.

The bill introduces important changes to improve the Supreme Court’s jury system. It proposes to amend the Juries Act 1967 to allow potential jurors to be identified by a number, rather than by name and occupation. This amendment is being made at the request of the Chief Justice, and is supported by justice system stakeholders. The change will militate against the possibility of jurors being identified later by people on whose case they are sitting. It is designed to protect the privacy of individuals, reduce any fears of reprisals, and reinforce the confidential nature of the deliberations of a jury. The new system will bring the ACT into line with other Australian jurisdictions, and is modelled on the jury system in New South Wales.

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