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Tuesday, 7 February 2017
Page: 84


Mr HARTSUYKER (CowperAssistant Minister to the Deputy Prime Minister) (17:16): I welcome the opportunity to speak on the Statute Update (ACT Self-Government (Consequential Provisions) Regulations) Bill 2016, which will ensure that Commonwealth laws apply more clearly in respect of the ACT and, in the spirit of reducing red tape, simplify and reduce the amount of legislation users need to consult when doing business in the ACT. As it currently stands, some Commonwealth laws apply on the ACT Self-Government (Consequential Provisions) Regulations to apply to the ACT. The text of these laws does not explicitly refer to the ACT. Instead, the regulations modify these laws to apply them to the ACT. The bill will amend these Commonwealth laws to directly refer to the ACT and remove the need to consult the regulations. This reform will reduce the complexity associated with the regulations, simplify the application of Commonwealth laws in respect of the ACT and make it easier for users to interpret the law. Without this reform, users may not consider the effect of the regulations and may make errors in interpreting the law.

The bill will also address the impending sunsetting of the regulations in 2018. If the regulations sunset and this bill is not passed, the affected Commonwealth laws will no longer apply to the ACT. This bill will ensure the affected Commonwealth laws continue to apply to the ACT. The operation of the law itself will not change. I commend the bill to the House.

Question agreed to.

Bill read a second time.