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Friday, 19 October 1984
Page: 2045

Senator GRIMES (Minister for Social Security)(9.55) —I am not quite sure what Senator Macklin's problem is with the emergency declaration procedures , but I point out that although it is not so that emergency declarations will never occur, as Senator Hill seemed to suggest last night, they will be extremely rare. But when an emergency situation arises, I do not think that it would be a very sensible procedure to have to go ahead and get a public inquiry going, which would inevitably take many months, when we have in the legislation the provision that the whole decision can be reviewed by the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Senator Haines —Do you know what the backlog is at the AAT?

Senator GRIMES —It depends on which section the honourable senator is talking about. If she is talking about my section, there is a huge backlog; but I am sure that it will not be too large in areas of biological control. The application for a review, as I am sure Senator Macklin has detected, is available under clause 56 of the legislation. We think that that is sufficient, so we are opposing the amendment.