Page 3131 - Week 08 - Thursday, 16 August 2018

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If you do not like criminal control order legislation, if it is not strong enough for you over on that side of the chamber, I will bring into this place anti-consorting laws, the same as those in New South Wales, and you can have a go at them. Then you can argue why you do not support those, because they are the laws that I have been calling for, that Mrs Dunne has been calling for, that the opposition has been calling for, that the Australian Federal Police have been calling for, that the Chief Police Officer has been calling for, that the association has been calling for for nearly a decade, and you refuse to bring them into this place.

We will be back with those laws. Then we will see you vote no. We will divide. Every one of you who votes no to those laws that we will bring forward can take the responsibility on your hands, as you have for the past decade, for the increase in violence in our community. This is happening through your negligence.

MR RAMSAY (Ginninderra—Attorney-General, Minister for Regulatory Services, Minister for the Arts and Community Events and Minister for Veterans and Seniors) (5.49): As Attorney-General I am pleased to speak in support of the appropriation bills for 2018-19 and particularly the measures that offer the provision of high quality access to justice for the vulnerable people in our society through strong and efficient justice institutions that operate as a coherent system, place people at the centre of the system and focus on harm reduction and restorative resolution of conflicts.

The 2018-19 budget provides additional funding of $32.1 million over four years to keep the ACT safe by continued investment in efficient courts, effective prosecutions, and innovative justice initiatives that respond to community need.

As our city continues to grow it is essential that we have a responsive and flexible justice system, so $5.4 million over four years has been provided to appoint a full-time eighth magistrate, including $3.1 million for the ACT courts and tribunal to look after the additional magistrate and support staff, and $2.3 million for Legal Aid and the Director of Public Prosecutions to respond to the increased workload. This additional magistrate will improve certainty, efficiency, availability and consistency in the Magistrates Court, and will facilitate faster access to justice. The Coroner’s Court will receive $1.9 million over four years to appoint a resident full-time forensic pathologist who will help to ease pressures on the coronial system.

The budget includes measures to improve the infrastructure of the courts and tribunal, namely $1.1 million over four years to modernise the Supreme Court jury management system and $70,000 in 2018-19 from the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal for a quantity surveyor to examine the ACAT’s future accommodation needs.

The budget also supports the government’s election commitment to deliver a dedicated ACT drug and alcohol court to reduce drug and alcohol dependency and related criminal activities. It will provide $625,000 in 2018-19 for further preparatory work, building on the $1.1 million provided in the 2017-18 second appropriation to develop procedures and a model of care and to finalise the new court’s costs and design. The government is committed to ensuring that the model and the supporting services are appropriate for the ACT.

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