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Tuesday, 17 February 1987
Page: 98


Senator GARETH EVANS (Minister for Resources and Energy)(8.34) —I move:

(38) Page 13, after clause 24, insert the following new clause in Part VI:

Safety Review Committee

``24A. (1) The Minister shall establish a Committee under the name Safety Review Committee.

``(2) The functions of the Committee are-

(a) from time to time as the Committee considers appropriate, to review and assess the effectiveness of the standards, practices and procedures adopted by the Organisation to ensure the safety of its operations;

(b) either on its own initiative or at the request of the Minister or of the Board, to investigate any matter arising out of the operations of the Organisation that may have adverse consequences or implications in relation to the safety of those operations;

(c) either on its own initiative or at the request of the Minister, to furnish advice to the Minister on matters referred to in paragraphs (a) and (b); and

(d) either on its own initiative or at the request of the Board, to furnish advice to the Board on matters referred to in paragraphs (a) and (b).

``(3) A reference in this section to the safety of the operations of the Organisation is a reference to the safety of the members of the staff of the Organisation and of the public in relation to those operations.

``(4) The Committee shall, as soon as practicable after 30 June in each year, prepare and submit to the Minister and to the Board a report of its operations during the year that ended on that date.

``(5) The Committee may submit to the Minister and to the Board such other reports relating to the operations of the Committee as the Committee considers appropriate.

``(6) The Minister shall cause a copy of each report received by the Minister under sub-section (4) to be laid before each House of the Parliament within 15 sitting days of that House after the report is received by the Minister.

``(7) The Minister may cause a copy of a report received by the Minister under sub-section (5) to be laid before each House of the Parliament if the Minister considers that the report is of sufficient importance to justify the report being brought to the attention of the Parliament.

``(8) For the purpose of the performance of its functions, the Committee may obtain advice or assistance from any member of the staff of the Organisation.

``(9) The Committee shall consist of such persons (not being fewer than 2, nor more than 6, in number) as the Minister from time to time appoints.

``(10) In making appointments to the Committee the Minister shall ensure that a majority of the members of the Committee are persons who are not members of the staff of the Organisation.

``(11) The Minister shall appoint one of the members of the Committee to be the Chairperson of the Committee and another of the members of the Committee to be the Deputy Chairperson of the Committee.

``(12) The Chairperson of the Committee may be referred to as the Chairman of the Committee or the Chairwoman of the Committee, and the Deputy Chairperson of the Committee may be referred to as the Deputy Chairman of the Committee or the Deputy Chairwoman of the Committee, as the case requires.

``(13) A member of the Committee may resign from office by writing signed by the member and delivered to the Chairperson of the Board.

``(14) At a meeting of the Committee-

(a) if the Chairperson of the Committee is present-he or she shall preside;

(b) if the Chairperson of the Committee is not present but the Deputy Chairperson of the Committee is present-he or she shall preside; or

(c) in any other case-the members of the Committee present shall elect one of their number to preside.

``(15) Subject to sub-section (14), the Minister may determine the procedure to be followed at or in relation to meetings of the Committee, including matters with respect to-

(a) the convening of meetings of the Committee;

(b) the number of members of the Committee who are to constitute a quorum; and

(c) the manner in which questions arising at a meeting of the Committee are to be decided,

and the Minister shall cause the Committee to be notified in writing of any determination under this sub-section.

``(16) If the Minister decides that the members of the Committee should be remunerated, those members shall be paid such remuneration as is determined by the Remuneration Tribunal.

``(17) Members of the Committee shall be paid such allowances as are prescribed.

``(18) Sub-sections (16) and (17) have effect subject to the Remuneration Tribunals Act 1973.''.

The Australian Democrats have a number of amendments to proposed new clause 24A and the Government will be opposing those amendments.