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Thursday, 10 May 2018
Page: 2845


Senator BERNARDI (South Australia) (11:11): I regret that I can't just accept the buck-passing to ACMA. I do note that the other amendments deal with ACMA dealing with it, but these are very specific issues because the description of each senior manager of the person is one that could lead to ongoing legal dispute, if I may say so. What is deemed a 'senior manager'? Is it a director? Does having one foreign director on your board in a corporate entity contradict the grant criteria, if you've got some international expertise? These are quite genuine questions because they go to the workability of it. Similarly with 'financial assistance': I could mount an argument that financial assistance is a regular commercial contract. If you're preventing small publishers from entering into a commercial contract with a financial institution, a political party. a trade union, a superannuation fund, a policy lobby group or a non-government organisation you're probably killing their business. I'm sure that's not the intention, but I've learned in my time in this place that you're better off being quite specific and resolving these issues now rather than leaving it to an outside entity to interpret them, because they're prone to problems later on. I'm trying to avoid the problems.