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Notice given 13 September 2005

1173  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Family and Community Services—With reference to the Seniors Concession Allowance:

(1) For the 2004-05 financial year, how many people received the allowance and what was the total cost of the allowance.

(2) For each of the financial years 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08, what are the estimated numbers of people who will receive the allowance and what is the estimated total cost of the allowance.

1174  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Family and Community Services—With reference to people in receipt of the age pension:

(1) As at 30 June for each of the years 2000 to 2005, how many people were in receipt of: (a) the full single pension; (b) the full couples pension; (c) the full couples (separated by illness) pension; (d) a part single pension; (e) a part couples pension; and (f) a part couples (separated by illness) pension.

(2) As at 30 June for each the years 2001 to 2005, can information be provided on a distribution of: (a) the assessed fortnightly income of recipients in $50 intervals (e.g. $0-$50, $51-$100, $101-$150 etc); and (b) the assessed assets of recipients in $25 000 intervals (e.g. $0-$25 000, $25 001-$50 000, $50 001-$75 000 etc).

1175  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Family and Community Services—With reference to the Commonwealth Seniors Health Card:

(1) As at 30 June for each of the years 1999 to 2005, how many people had a card.

(2) As at 30 June for each of the years 2006 to 2008, what are the estimated numbers of people who will have a card.

(3) For each of the financial years 1999-2000, 2000-01, 2001-02, 2002-03, 2003-04 and 2004-05, what was the total cost of the card.

(4) For each of the financial years 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08, what is the estimated total cost of the card.

(5) As at 30 June 2005, what was the distribution of incomes of those with a card, in intervals of $5 000 per annum (e.g. $1-$5 000, $5 001-$10 000, $10 001-$15 000 etc) and can the same information be provided on the distribution of incomes for couples and individuals.

(6) In terms of the total cost of the card, proportionally what are the main cost items (e.g. the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme concession, the Senior Concession Allowance).

(7) In terms of the income test for the card: (a) how is the income information of individuals collected; and (b) is this information independently verified; if so, how.

(8) (a) Does Centrelink conduct annual reviews to ensure that persons issued with a card remain eligible for the card (i.e. that their income remains below the thresholds) or is the cardholder required to inform Centrelink of a change in their circumstances; and (b) if such reviews are undertaken, can a description of the review process be provided.

1176  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Human Services—With reference to the answer to question no. HS41 provided to the Finance and Public Administration Legislation Committee during additional estimates hearings on 15 February 2005:

(1) (a) Can Centrelink explain how individuals were targeted for a review of real estate property values; and (b) what criteria did Centrelink use to determine who should be reviewed.

(2) Can Centrelink explain why, between the financial years 2002-03 and 2003-04, the number of reviews of individuals in receipt of a number of allowances and payments declined significantly (e.g. the number of reviews of Newstart Allowance recipients dropped from 731 to 192 and the number of reviews of Disability Support Pension recipients dropped from 622 to 142).

(3) Can Centrelink explain why, between the financial years 2002-03 and 2003-04, the number of reviews of individuals in receipt of the age pension increased from 14 390 to 19 169.

(4) Can Centrelink confirm that it has no available information on the state or territory of residence of the payment recipients who suffered a cancellation or reduction of payment following a review of property during the financial years 2002-03 and 2003-04.

(5) For the 2005-06 financial year, how many reviews of payment recipients’ real estate property values are planned.

(6) For the 2005-06 financial year to date: (a) how many reviews of payment recipient’s real estate property values have been completed; and (b) can a summary of the results of those reviews be provided in the same format as provided in the answer to question no. HS41.

1177  Senator Bishop: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) Has the Minister’s attention been drawn to an article in the Townsville Bulletin , dated 3 August 2005, which reported on the inquest into the death of Australian Naval Cadet Nicholas Schumacher of Mackay who died from head injuries following a car accident on 12 September 2004.

(2) Can the Minister confirm that the Landcruiser troop carrier in which Cadet Schumacher was travelling was purchased by the Commanding Officer of Training Ship (TS) Pioneer for a sum of $3 000.

(3) Which person or agency: (a) was the registered seller of the Landcruiser at the time of the purchase; and (b) was registered as the new owner of the vehicle.

(4) Was the Landcruiser used exclusively by the Australian Naval Cadets; if not, which person or agency was permitted to use the vehicle.

(5) What insurance coverage was taken out on this vehicle and which person or agency paid the insurance premiums.

(6) Which person or agency was responsible for registration of the vehicle with the Queensland Licensing Centre and which person or agency paid this account.

(7) Can it be confirmed that one tyre on the vehicle had been fitted with a 12-year-old patched inner tube; if so, was the patched inner tube in the tyre at the time of the sale of the vehicle for $3 000 to the Commanding Officer of TS Pioneer .

(8) (a) What was the nature of the injuries to the 6 cadets who were also passengers in the vehicle at the time of the accident; (b) what treatment was given to the cadets; and (c) which cadets are receiving ongoing treatment.

(9) (a) Why was the vehicle sold prior to the commencement of the inquest; (b) to whom was it sold; (c) when did the sale take place; (d) which person or agency arranged the sale; (e) who approved the advertisement of the vehicle; and (f) at what cost.

1178  Senator Bishop: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) Has the Minister’s attention been drawn to a report in The Age , dated 6 September 2005, on evidence given to an inquest into the death of Trooper Angus Lawrence who died from heat exhaustion during training exercises at Mt Bundy, near Kakadu National Park in the Northern Territory in November 2004.

(2) During the 8-week training course in November 2004: (a) how many army personnel were treated for heat exhaustion; (b) how many were hospitalised for treatment; and (c) what was the length of hospitalisation in each instance.

(3) (a) What medical services were available to personnel during this training course; (b) how many staff were available; (c) where were they located during training exercises and; (d) what monitoring of personnel health was conducted.

(4) What was the severity of health problems suffered by those treated for heat exhaustion and what ongoing health problems are experienced by those affected.

(5) (a) Since 2002, how many army personnel based at Robertson Barracks have been treated for heat exhaustion; (b) how many were hospitalised for treatment; and (c) what were the circumstances of each incident.

(6) What changes have been made to training procedures at Robertson Barracks to prevent heat exhaustion to troops during training exercises.

(7) (a) What types of personnel transport are air-conditioned; and (b) which personnel transports were in use during training at Mt Bundy in November 2004.

1179  Senator Bishop: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) Has the Minister’s attention been drawn to an article in the Adelaide Advertiser , dated 29 August 2005, which reported on departmental files found in a public bin in Brompton, South Australia.; if so, when were the files found and by whom.

(2) (a) When did the department become aware that the files had been found in a public bin; (b) when did the department commence an investigation into the matter; (c) who was charged with leading the investigation; (d) what resources were allocated to the investigation; and (e) what were the findings of the investigation.

(3) What types of information were contained in the files and what was the level of sensitivity of the information contained in the files.

(4) What procedures are in place for the disposal of departmental files.

 

 1180  Senator Stott Despoja: To ask the Minister representing the Attorney-General—

(1) With reference to statements made by the Attorney-General that the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation made a security assessment of American peace activist, Mr Scott Parkin, based on matters relating to ‘politically motivated violence, including violent protest activity’; are there specific guidelines as to what exactly constitutes ‘politically motivated violence’ or ‘violent protest activity’; if so, what are the guidelines and who makes the final judgement.

(2) When did the Attorney-General first become aware that Mr Parkin represented a ‘serious threat to Australian national security’.

(3) Has Mr Parkin acted in any way contrary to Australian laws while he has been in Australia.

(4) If Mr Parkin posed a serious threat to national security why was he granted a visa.

(5) What, or who, prompted initial concerns that Mr Parkin may pose a ‘serious threat to Australian national security’ and when did this occur.

1181  Senator Siewert: To ask the Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation—With reference to the practice of bottom trawling within Australia’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ):

(1) Can the Minister outline the extent to which the Government is aware of illegal, unregulated and unreported (IUU) bottom trawling occurring within the Australian EEZ, specifically: (a) the number of vessels apprehended annually; (b) the estimated annual IUU catch; and (c) the estimated number of vessels employing this technique within the Australian EEZ.

(2) What measures is the Government employing to deter IUU bottom trawling within the Australian EEZ.

1182  Senator Siewert: To ask the Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation—With reference to the practice of unregulated bottom trawling on the high seas:

(1) Is the Minister aware: (a) of the extent of the damage inflicted on deep sea coral and sponge environments by the practice of bottom trawling; and (b) that nearly all bottom trawling of the high seas is unregulated and the catch unreported.

(2) Does the Minister support a United Nations (UN) moratorium on high seas bottom trawling until such time as legal instruments for the long-term conservation and sustainable management of deep ocean ecosystems can be developed; if not, why not.

(3) Will the Minister support the resolution for a global moratorium when it is debated in the UN General Assembly in November 2005; if not, why not and what alternatives are proposed for dealing with the damage caused by the practice of bottom trawling.

1183  Senator Siewert: To ask the Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation—With reference to the practice of bottom trawling undertaken by Australian-flagged vessels on the high seas:

(1) For the financial year 2004-05 to date, or the most recent year in which statistics are available, can the Minister outline the number of Australian-flagged vessels undertaking the practice of bottom trawling on the high seas.

(2) How, if at all, does the Government regulate these vessels.

(3) For the financial year 2004-5 to date, or the most recent year in which statistics are available, what is the reported annual catch of such vessels, specifically: (a) for targeted species; and (b) bycatch.

1184  Senator Siewert: To ask the Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation—With reference to the practice of bottom trawling within Australia’s Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ):

(1) Can the Minister outline the extent to which the practice of bottom trawling is allowed within the Australian EEZ, specifically: (a) the number of vessels licensed to use this method of fishing; (b) the approximate tonnage of catch reported for the financial years 2003-04 and 2004-05, using this method of fishing; (c) the principal targeted species; (d) the location of fisheries where this practice is carried out; and (e) the proportion of Australian-flagged vessels as opposed to vessels from other countries.

(2) Can the Minister outline the regulatory framework under which this practice is carried out in Australia, including key legislation and/or regulations and which agencies are primarily responsible for regulation of this practice.

1185  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads—

(1) How many Federal Government Roads to Recovery signs are currently in each electorate.

(2) For each of the past 3 financial years, how much has the Commonwealth spent on erecting Roads to Recovery signs in each electorate.

(3) How many Federal Black Spot program signs are currently in each electorate.

(4) For each of the past 3 financial years, how much has the Commonwealth spent on erecting Federal Black Spot program signs in each electorate.

1186  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads—For each of the past 3 financial years, in the electorate of Curtin, how much has the Commonwealth spent on: (a) Roads to Recovery; and (b) the Federal Black Spot program.

1187  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Treasurer—

(1) For each financial year since its inception, what has been the total cost to the Commonwealth of the Energy Grants (Credits) Scheme for each of the following activities: (a) road transport; (b) agriculture; (c) fishing; (d) forestry; (e) mining; (f) marine transport; (g) rail transport; (h) nursing and medical; and (i) generating electricity.

(2) For each of the next 5 financial years and for each activity listed in (1) above, what is the projected cost to the Commonwealth of the Energy Grants (Credits) Scheme.

(3) What is the current rate of rebate available under the Energy Grants (Credits) Scheme.

(4) For each of the next 5 financial years, what is the projected rate of rebate available under the Energy Grants (Credits) Scheme.

1188  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services—With reference to training courses or workshops provided for each of the past 3 financial years to the department by the Australian Maritime College or AMC Search Limited:

(1) When and in what locations were training courses or workshops provided to departmental staff.

(2) Which entity provided the training course or workshop.

(3) What staff designations attended each training course or workshop.

(4) How much did each training course or workshop cost the department.

(5) What was the title of each training course or workshop and can the curriculum of each training course or workshop be provided; if not, why not.

Senator O’Brien: To ask the Ministers listed below (Question Nos 1189-1219)—

(1) For each of the past 3 financial years, on how many occasions has the Minister, departmental staff or the Minister’s personal staff travelled by aircraft between Alice Springs and Tennant Creek.

(2) For each trip can the Minister advise: (a) the date of travel; (b) the purpose of travel; (c) the cost to the Commonwealth of the travel; (d) whether the Minister travelled; (e) the classification of staff travelling; (f) the name of the carrier; (g) whether other carriers provided flights in the same direction on the same day as the travel taken; and (h) the reason the carrier who provided the travel was chosen over other carriers which provided flights in the same direction on the same day as the travel taken.

1189 Minister representing the Prime Minister

1190 Minister representing the Minister for Trade

1191 Minister representing the Treasurer

1192 Minister for Defence

1193 Minister representing the Minister for Foreign Affairs

1194 Minister representing the Minister for Transport and Regional Services

1195 Minister representing the Minister for Health and Ageing

1196 Minister representing the Attorney-General

1197 Minister for Finance and Administration

1198 Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs

1199 Minister representing the Minister for Education, Science and Training

1200 Minister for Family and Community Services

1201 Minister representing the Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources

1202 Minister representing the Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations

1203 Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts

1204 Minister for the Environment and Heritage

1205 Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry

1206 Minister for Justice and Customs

1207 Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation

1208 Minister for the Arts and Sport

1209 Minister representing the Minister for Human Services

1210 Minister representing the Minister for Revenue and Assistant Treasurer

1211 Special Minister of State

1212 Minister representing the Minister for Vocational and Technical Education

1213 Minister representing the Minister for Ageing

1214 Minister representing the Minister for Small Business and Tourism

1215 Minister representing the Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads

1216 Minister representing the Minister for Veterans’ Affairs

1217 Minister representing the Minister for Workforce Participation

1218 Minister representing the Minister for Citizenship and Multicultural Affairs

1219 Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women’s Issues