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Thursday, 21 June 2007
Page: 180

Senator McLUCAS (6:39 PM) —It seems that we are dealing with two separate amendments. The one I have is not that specific and I am actually not sure how we got to this point, to be frank.

The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN (Senator Barnett)—Senator McLucas, can you just draw the attention of the Senate and of the parliamentary secretary to the part that is different in the amendment you are referring to?

Senator McLUCAS —The amendment I thought I was moving says, ‘The minister shall cause to be carried out an independent review of the operation of this act 18 months after its date of commencement.’ Paragraphs 2 and 3 seem to be the same, but my paragraph 4 says, ‘The reviewing officer shall prepare a report based on the review and, as soon as practicable after its preparation, shall cause the report to be presented to both houses of the parliament.’ I really do not know how this amendment has been circulated under my name.

The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN —I will seek clarification, Senator McLucas, as to whether you have provided a copy of the amendment that you have to either the Clerk or the Senate.

Senator McLUCAS —Given that they have the same number, I am somewhat bemused, to be frank.

The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN —Do you have a spare copy of that amendment?

Senator McLUCAS —I have given it to the assistant clerk. Parliamentary Secretary, while we are waiting, I could tell you about how the RCS was a disaster and we needed to have a review and how the review was helpful—and that is why we need to have a review. Alternatively, I could say that I am pleased that we do have on the record a commitment from the government to undertake a review within 18 months of the start-up date, which is in March of next year. That is useful to have on the record. I acknowledge the points you made about timing and I am not sure how we got to that point where it was that specific. But, in terms of the scope of the review, I think it is reasonable to ask whether the achievements, the stated aims of ACFI, have been achieved. I wonder whether you might advise the committee of what other areas would be relevant to be reviewed, when the review is undertaken.

The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN —Parliamentary Secretary, I just indicate that we are obtaining copies of the amendment that has been moved by Senator McLucas so that you can review it and consider your position. I appreciate that you would want to know the full details of that amendment. Would you like to make further comment?