Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Current HansardDownload Current Hansard   

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Friday, 1 June 1984
Page: 2382

Senator GARETH EVANS (Attorney-General)(3.17) —Some of the matters raised in the questions asked by Senator Durack may be still unanswered, but they are neither many nor serious. Senator Durack asked questions about the amount of travel undertaken by Mr Temby since his appointment, in particular the number of trips to the West, and the business that transpired on each of those occasions. I am happy to provide the information requested, but I shall have to take the questions on notice because that information is not with me or my officers physically at the moment.

Senator Durack —Don't you want a vote on this matter?

Senator GARETH EVANS —I would hate to think that Senator Durack would be churlish enough to deny a vote on a matter of detail of that kind, of which he did not give specific notice before the day's proceedings commenced. Senator Durack asked also about the terms and conditions applicable to Mr Temby's appointment generally. That question was answered by Mr Glare, when he stated succinctly:

. . . his terms and conditions of appointment, not elsewhere provided for, (are ) those applying to an officer in the First Division of the Australian Public Service.

That is as one would expect, given the status and stature of this particular appointment. I was asked about the terms and conditions of the appointment, particularly those designed to accommodate Mr Temby's needs in the transition period and subsequently. No such term and conditions have formally been identified in past negotiations or in any negotiations that have taken place since the date of the Estimates Committee hearing. There was simply an informal acknowledgement, to which I referred at the Estimates Committee hearing, that there would need to be, given the short notice character of the appointment, perhaps a slightly greater degree of travel during an initial transitional period than would otherwise be the case. I expect that situation to continue throughout the year, but certainly not to the extent of Mr Temby engaging in travel which has no justification other than his tidying up his personal affairs . It has been envisaged from the outset that any such travel in which Mr Temby engaged would be likely to be very much justified in any event by the need for him to travel a great deal around Australia setting in place the arrangements for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and working out the arrangements for the prosecution agencies, as it were, that will continue to exist in those deputy Crown solicitors offices that do not have a formal identification with the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Mr Glare in his letter said that negotiations were under way for a more formal arrangement. Since that letter was written by Mr Glare I have had occasion to talk to Mr Temby about the desirability or otherwise of there being a formal arrangement governing his travel in the future. I think it is our shared view, subject to possible further better thoughts-I doubt that there will be further better thoughts; I think it is our shared view-that there is no necessity for any such formal arrangement, that things have settled down quite quickly. A degree of travel around Australia will continue to be involved in the job but in the future that will be sufficient for any particular needs that Mr Temby might have so far as his home State is concerned. It is unlikely that there will be anything justifying the description of negotiations or justifying the description of a formal agreement reached outside the framework of the ordinarily applicable Public Service First Division conditions. Apart from supplying that detailed information, which I am happy to do as soon as we can dig it out, I do not think there is anything more I can usefully add on this subject.