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Tuesday, 25 March 1997
Page: 2436

Senator KEMP (Assistant Treasurer)(9.53 p.m.) —To make a general point, I think all your amendments were designed to be an integrated whole and, as a result of what has happened, you have actually achieved a very perverse result from your own point of view. We will obviously have to address that when the bill comes back. My advice is that the effect of deleting clauses 53 and 54 is that the RSA provider will not be required to give any information before it opens an account on behalf of an employee. A very perverse result has resulted from the way this bill has been conducted; I dare say it will have to come back to this chamber to get that fixed up. I just flag that with you. I think you have achieved, in the earlier amendment, the absolute reverse of what you were seeking to achieve. I think this is part of the problem. The way the amendments have flowed, you have been able to get some up and not others.

Senator Sherry —Not enough.

Senator KEMP —The initial advice is that it has actually produced the reverse result of what you wanted, but I guess we can discuss that later and get that fixed up. We are not supporting the amendment you have moved. Your amendment to clause 60 flows from your opposition policy position to essentially prevent an employer from opening an account for an employee. You have fought that all night. We have opposed that all night. We think we have a mandate and you are unwilling to accept that. If the amendment is carried and the employer can be liable under the SG regime twice, that of course is a double dip in jeopardy. The subclause provides protection for SG money which is inadvertently accepted by an RSA provider who has had their approval as an RSA institution revoked or suspended and is therefore not allowed to accept contributions or where there is a notice under clause 181 not to accept money from an employer. Without this subclause these employers may be forced to pay the superannuation guarantee charge even though they made every attempt to pay the SG levy on time. We strongly oppose the amendment.

Amendment negatived.