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Thursday, 11 October 2012
Page: 12071

Ms COLLINS (FranklinMinister for Community Services, Minister for the Status of Women and Minister for Indigenous Employment and Economic Development) (12:53): The Social and Community Services Pay Equity Special Account (Consequential Amendments) Bill 2012 enables funds to be transferred from the special account we established with the last bill into the COAG Reform Fund, enabling payments to social and community sector workers in the states and territories. It is a companion bill to the Social and Community Services Pay Equity Special Account Bill and, as I said, that bill establishes a special account under section 21 of the Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 to fund the Commonwealth's contribution to the historic pay rise awarded by Fair Work Australia earlier this year to our social and community service sector workers.

This supplementation from the Commonwealth will be delivered through funding drawn from the special account for eight Commonwealth agencies and allocated to assist employers who are directly or indirectly funded by the Commonwealth for the purposes of a program prescribed under the new legislation, and who are required to make payments to their employees under the pay equity arrangements. This consequential amendments bill makes one minor amendment to the existing Commonwealth legislation to complete the new arrangements. This amendment will insert into the COAG Reform Fund Act a note pointing out that an amount may be credited to the COAG Reform Fund under the new Social and Community Services Pay Equity Special Account 2012.

Bill read a second time.

Message from the Governor-General recommending appropriation announced.