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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 04 Hansard (Thursday, 12 April 2018) . . Page.. 1400 ..

“(a) the letter distributed to Canberra residents in the names of Miss C. Burch and Ms Lee titled Inquiry into the methodology for determining rates and land tax for apartments;

(b) the letter calls upon residents of the Australian Capital Territory to make submissions to an inquiry of an Assembly committee via the website;

(c) the ‘haveyoursay’ website is not operated by the committee secretariat, but by the Liberal Party of Australia ACT Division, with a registrant contact name of Alistair Coe;

(d) the letter and the ‘haveyoursay’ website may combine to create a false impression that they are proceedings of the Assembly or its committees;

(e) as political parties are not subject to the Privacy Act 1988 (section 6C), there is no law governing how any information collected by the website will be used, or that all submissions made were accurately forwarded to the committee;

(f) there is a possibility that submissions to the ‘haveyoursay’ website were not all submitted to the Standing Committee on Public Accounts, and hence the course of the inquiry has been corrupted; and

(g) a number of other non-Legislative Assembly websites have been established to generate submissions to Assembly committee inquiries, including Unions ACT for the insecure work inquiry and Australian Christian Lobby for the Select Committee on End of Life Choices in the ACT;

(2) pursuant to standing order 277, a Select Committee on Privileges be established to examine whether there has been a breach of the standing orders by contempt of the committee by Ms Lee, Miss C. Burch or Mr Coe, in relation to matters noted and any other relevant matters, including whether the conduct constitutes:

(a) interference with the Assembly;

(b) obstruction of orders;

(c) interference with witnesses;

(d) refusal or failure to produce documents, or to allow the inspection of documents; or

(e) destruction, damage, forging or falsification of any documents;

(3) the Committee should also examine whether the third-party websites raised in (1)(g) have raised any issues of breaches of privilege or standing orders, and whether guidelines should be developed for promotion of, and generation of, submissions to committee inquiries;

(4) the Committee shall report back to the Assembly on the first sitting day of July 2018;

(5) notes that the Standing Committee on Public Accounts can continue its business relating to the rates inquiry by meeting and holding public hearings on this matter, but should not report to the Assembly prior to the Select Committee on Privileges reporting to the Assembly; and

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