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Tuesday, 7 May 1985
Page: 1458


Senator MESSNER(6.27) -I do not wish to delay the Committee. I will just make one or two points which arise from the remarks of the Minister for Community Services (Senator Grimes). I accept his admonition about the number of other guidelines of this type which are subject to disallowance. I, of course, was referring to the general principle of disallowance of regulations when I spoke about that point in my speech on the second reading of the Bill. But one point that he raised seems to me to be totally inconsistent. I think that it is in this regard that the Government fails to acknowledge the concerns of the community. He made the point that the guidelines do not establish the distribution of funds and that the Schedule to the Bill sets out the way in which the funds will be distributed by the States. Surely, if the guidelines are present and they are part of the legislation, they must set down the criteria by which a determination will be established between various organisations, otherwise why have the guidelines and what are they attempting to do if they are not drawing lines of difference between individual operators? Surely, that gets to the core of what we are talking about. The Minister, I am afraid, has not been able to explain to our satisfaction why it is that he cannot provide the guidelines and make them subject to disallowance in that form.

The other point was that Senator Haines referred to the fact that she indicated to me earlier that she would not support the amendment. Frankly, I do recall that, but she made one other point about moving an amendment of her own. It was that amendment which was subsequently taken care of by virtue of our further amendment which has now been moved; in other words, the amendment that has now been moved is the one which incorporated the objection which Senator Haines had at that time. Therefore, I would have expected that in the normal circumstances she would have supported this further amendment.