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Wednesday, 14 May 2003
Page: 14514


Mr McMullan asked the Attorney-General, upon notice, on 16 October 2002:

Has the Minister's Department made payments to the national or State and Territory branches of the (a) Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry, (b) Australian Industry Group, (c) National Farmers' Federation or (d) Business Council of Australia for consultancies, training and other purposes in (i) 1996-97, (ii) 1997-98, (iii) 1998-99, (iv) 1999-2000, (v) 2000-2001, (vi) 2001-2002 and (vii) 2002-2003 to date; if so, what sums and when.


Mr Williams (Attorney-General) —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(a), (b), and (d) My Department has advised that no record has been found of payments having been made to these organisations.

(c) The National Farmers' Federation (NFF) is made up of State farm organisations, commodity councils, associates, affiliates and friends of the NFF. The NFF does not have individual farmer members or a State and Territory branch structure.

The Department's financial information system `SAP' (and prior to 1998, `FI$CLE') records the total amounts per year paid to members of the NFF as detailed at Attachment A. No payments were made direct to the NFF.

These payments were made to support a range of activities relating to the representation and support of respondents to native title proceedings and negotiations.

In addition payments have been made to legal practitioners for the benefit of some of these bodies as group representatives of respondents to applications made under the Native Title Act 1993. These payments are recorded by reference to the legal practitioner to which the money was paid. Identification of which payments have been paid to various practitioners for the benefit of these groups would require a manual cross check of hardcopy files. The significant resources required to undertake such a task are not available.

Attachment A

Payments made to members of the National Farmers Federation (NFF) as recorded in SAP and FI$CLE1

(payment amounts are GST inclusive in the relevant years)

Organisation

1996-97

1997-98

1998-99

1999-00

2000-01

2001-02

2002-032

Total

AgForce Queensland3

0

0

1,260,012

122,741

196,805

275,104

69,197

1,923,859

New South Wales Farmers' Federation3

0

0

76,508

0

96,800

259,424

0

432,732

Victorian Farmers Federation3

0

0

427

0

537

0

0

964

South Australian Farmers' Federation3

481

205,848

208,102

41,800

70,600

72,721

9,827

609,379

Pastoralists' & Graziers' Association of Western Australia3

0

326,500

893,000

797,500

770,000

1,227,309

300,725

4,315,034

Northern Territory Cattlemen's Association3

0

0

0

25,000

0

0

0

25,000

Australian Cane Growers Council4

0

0

979

0

0

0

0

979

Western Australian Farmers' Federation5

0

0

1,938

0

0

0

0

1,938

Total

481

532,348

2,440,966

987,041

1,134,742

1,834,558

379,749

7,309,885

1 SAP is the Department's current financial management system. Prior to 1998, the financial management system used was FI$CLE.

2 This column only includes payments made between 1 July 2002 and 16 October 2002.

3 These organisations are all State or Territory organisations.

4 This organisation is a commodity council.

5 This organisation is an associate member of the NFF.