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Migration Laws Amendment Bill (No. 2) 1992
House: House of Representatives Portfolio: Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs
Purpose To introduce fees for those attending English language courses and to oblige the government to provide 510 hours of tuition in English to certain visa applicants.
Background Refer to the Digest for the Immigration (Education) Charge Bill 1992.
Main Provisions Clause 3 contains a number of definitions. These have the same meaning as in the Immigration (Education) Charge Bill 1992.
Clause 5 will insert a new section 4A into the Immigration (Education) Act 1971 (the Principal Act) which will allow regulations to be made for a maximum charge of $250 to be paid annually by students in English language courses for migrants. The regulations are to exempt registered jobseekers and health care card holders and provide that the fees are payable on enrolment. The regulations may provide for different classes of fees and for exceptions.
Proposed sections 4B to 4E will be inserted into the Principal Act by clause 6. The proposed sections deal with the provision of English classes to those who have paid the English education charge (EEC). Proposed section 4B provides that the Minister is to arrange English courses for those who have applied for a stay visa, are 18 or over, have paid or are exempt from the EEC and who do not have functional English. Where these conditions are satisfied, the Minister is to arrange for the provision of 510 hours of tuition (proposed section 4C). Unless the Minister determines that it would be unreasonable, this obligation will cease where: * the provider of the course has certified, in accordance with approved procedures, that the person has functional English;
* the person has failed to register for an approved course within 3 months of the commencement of the stay visa or has failed to commence a course within a year of this date; or
* at the end of three years after the commencement date of the stay visa (proposed section 4D).
People will be entitled to a refund of the EEC if the obligation to provide the tuition remains in force and the person withdraws the application; the stay visa ceases to be in force before a course is commenced and the person has not applied for another stay visa; or where the person dies before commencing the course (proposed section 4E).
Part 4 of the Bill will amend the Migration Act 1958. Clause 4 will amend section 4 of this Act to provide that a person will be taken to have functional English where: they pass a test that is approved by the Minister and conducted by an approved person or organisation; or provide the Minister with prescribed evidence of their English proficiency.
Further amendments to this Act will require the Minister to include in visas a notice to the effect that the visa will not be granted unless the EEC is paid where the Immigration (Education) Charge Bill applies to the person, they are 18 or over and do not have functional English.
The consideration of refugee status for Chinese nationals who were in Australia on or before 20 June 1989 will be clarified by amendments contained in clause 13. This provision will amend section 22AD of this Act, which provides that applications for refugee status from the holders of PRC (temporary) entry permits need not be considered within the applicable time limits, to clarify its operation. The amendment will make it clear that section 22AD applies to people who hold an entry permit or entry visa that was granted to a national of the Peoples Republic of China who was in Australia on or before 20 June 1989 and to entry visas or permits granted to people because they were a spouse or dependant child of such a person.
Bills Digest Service 26 November 1992 Parliamentary Research Service
This Digest does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be consulted to determine the subsequent official status of the Bill.
Commonwealth of Australia 1992
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Published by the Department of the Parliamentary Library, 1992.