Page 416 - Week 02 - Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

A minor amendment to the Guardianship Act will allow the ACAT to suspend an enduring power of attorney instead of revoking it entirely. This seems a sensible amendment that allows some flexibility as it is not always appropriate to revoke an enduring power of attorney in its entirety. The Attorney-General provided a relevant example, that is, when the ACAT appoints the Public Trustee and Guardian to represent an incapacitated person and currently most revoke an existing power of attorney to allow this to happen. This amendment, as it is framed, will allow the ACAT to suspend the enduring power of attorney for the duration of the Public Trustee and Guardian’s appointment, which is much more practical.

Several other technical amendments are made, such as amendments to the Human Rights Act, the Human Rights Commission Act, and the Terrorism (Extraordinary Temporary Powers) Act to reflect revised administrative arrangements in the government. I will take this opportunity to note, as I have argued before, that the Terrorism (Extraordinary Temporary Powers) Act is probably no longer temporary as the government keeps extending it. This is a debate we need to continue to have in this place about whether that is how we want things to operate in this territory.

An amendment to the Information Privacy Act allows the government to enter contracts provided there are suitable privacy provisions in place. Previously there could only be territory privacy principles, but this amendment will allow contracts that recognise other appropriate privacy protections, such as those from a different jurisdiction, provided it is recognised in the regulation to the Privacy Act.

I note that these regulations will come before the Assembly so that we can check we are satisfied that only suitable third-party privacy laws are recognised. The positive of this change is that it allows flexibility in contracts, which is useful in the modern world of government business where directorates may sign up, for example, to overseas services such as cloud service providers.

Lastly, I will briefly mention that the bill updates the Juries Act to allow airline operating staff to claim exemption from jury duty. That seems appropriate. It also makes a minor improvement to the Residential Tenancies Act to ensure that people with a protection order do not need to apply to the ACAT for an order to terminate their residential tenancy agreement with the respondent named in the protection order. Clearly it is sensible to make sure this provision is working properly.

In light of those few brief remarks, I am happy to indicate the Greens’ support for all of these changes in the bill brought forward by the Attorney-General.

MR RAMSAY (Ginninderra—Attorney-General, Minister for Regulatory Services, Minister for the Arts and Community Events and Minister for Veterans and Seniors) (4.35), in reply: I am most pleased to speak in summary and support of the Justice and Community Safety Legislation Amendment Bill 2016 (No 3), and I acknowledge and appreciate the support of the opposition and the Greens on this bill.

The bill amends a number of acts to implement positive social and regulatory changes for the ACT community and to improve the administration of the government. The

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video