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Notice given 18 November 2002

931  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—Did quarantine negotiations with Korea in the 2001-02 financial year result in improved access to the Korean market for any Australian goods; if so, what goods were concerned and what are the details of the improved market access.

932  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—What International Agricultural Cooperation projects have been funded under the Agriculture - Advancing Australia Program.

933  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) When did negotiations with Environment Australia commence on a memorandum of understanding on consideration of environment issues in import risk analyses.

(2) Has a memorandum of understanding been agreed to; if so, can a copy be provided.

(3) If a memorandum of understanding has been agreed, but it cannot be provided, why not.

(4) If negotiations on a memorandum of understanding are continuing, when will they conclude.

(5) Has the absence of a memorandum of understanding with Environment Australia, and/or delay in concluding negotiations, delayed or otherwise impacted on import risk analyses.

934  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—With reference to advice on page 102 of the department’s annual report for 2001-02 that, ‘15 new markets were opened as a result of technical access work and access to 12 existing markets was improved’: (a) which 15 new markets were opened to Australia; and (b) which 12 existing markets offered improved access to Australia, in the 2001-02 financial year.

935  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) When did the development of a National Animal Welfare Strategy commence.

(2) At commencement, what was the expected completion date for the strategy.

(3) When will the strategy development conclude.

936  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) What is the cost of Australia’s membership of the International Foot and Mouth Disease Vaccine Bank.

(2) What assessment has been made of its adequacy to meet Australia’s needs.

(3) What alternatives are available.

937  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) What projects have been funded under the Wildlife and Exotic Disease Preparedness Program.

(2) For each project, can the following information be provided: (a) project descriptions; (b) names of funding recipient; (c) registered addresses of funding recipients; (d) project commencement and conclusion dates; and (e) summaries of project evaluations.

(3) What budget has been allocated to this program for each of the following financial years: (a) 2001-02; and (b) 2002-03.

938  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—With reference to the 2001-02 financial year budget allocation for quarantine resourcing: How many extra detector dog teams were: (a) planned; and (b) deployed.

939  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) Has the review of the Export Control (Mung Bean) Orders concluded; if so, what recommendations does the review make.

(2) Can a copy of the review be provided; if not, why not.

(3) Has the Minister adopted the recommendations; if not, why not.

940  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) Has the Export Documentation Program been reviewed; if so, when did the review commence and conclude.

(2) Who conducted the review.

(3) What recommendations does the review make.

(4) Can a copy of the review be provided; if not, why not.

(5) Has the Minister adopted the recommendations; if not, why not.

(6) (a) What additional uptake of the program is expected in the 2002-03 financial year; and (b) can details be provided, by industry sector.

941  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—What is the budgeted cost of the second phase of the Quarantine Matters! campaign, due to conclude in the 2003-04 financial year.

942  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—What level of quarantine intervention is currently being maintained for: (a) mail arriving at Australian international mail centres; and (b) for high-volume, low-value air cargo.

943  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) What information is contained on the database established to hold details of participants in the 2002 Independent Assessment of the Sugar Industry.

(2) Were the individuals, companies and organisations that participated in the independent assessment informed their details would be entered on the database and subsequently maintained.

(3) How many: (a) individuals; (b) companies; and (c) organisations, are listed on the database.

(4) What is the purpose of maintaining the database.

(5) Who has access to the database.

(6) What use was made of the database during the independent assessment.

(7) Since the completion of the Independent Assessment of the Sugar Industry report: (a) what use has been made of the database; (b) how many times has the database been accessed; and (c) who has accessed the database.

(8) Has the Minister, or his office, sought access to data held on the database since the completion of the Independent Assessment of the Sugar Industry report.

(9) Has anyone else sought access to data held on the database.

944  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) (a) What events and locations has the Agriculture - Advancing Australia Roadshow visited since June 2001; and (b) on what dates did those visits occur.

(2) (a) Did the Roadshow stage a visit to Ag-Quip in August 2002; and (b) did the Minister feature on a video-link at this event.

(3) What has been the cost of staging the roadshow since June 2001.

(4) What events and locations will the roadshow visit in the remainder of the 2002-03 financial year.

945  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) (a) What was the largest individual performance bonus received by a staff member of the department in the 2001-02 financial year; and (b) what was the employee staff classification of the staff member.

(2) What was the smallest individual performance bonus received by a staff member of the department in the 2001-02 financial year; and (b) what was the employee staff classification of the staff member.

(3) In relation to performance payments to Senior Executive Service (SES) staff: (a) what performance criteria were used to assess the quantum of performance pay; (b) who assessed the performance against the criteria; and (c) who was the decision-maker.

(4) Was the Minister and/or his office consulted or involved in the decision-making process in relation to the payment of SES staff performance bonuses.

(5) In relation to the payment of a performance bonus to the Secretary of the Department, what was the quantum of the bonus, if any, in each of the following financial years: (a) 1999-2000; (b) 2000-01; and (c) 2001-02.

(6) If a performance bonus was paid to the Secretary of the Department in the 2001-02 financial year: why is the quantum of the bonus not divulged in the department’s annual report for 2001-02.

(7) In relation to the payment of a performance bonus to the Secretary of the Department in the 2001-02 financial year, if any: (a) what performance criteria were used; (b) who assessed the Secretary’s performance against the criteria; (c) who was the decision-maker; and (d) what role did the Minister and/or his office have in relation to the payment.

946  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) Is it the case that no Indigenous Australians were employed at Senior Executive Service (SES) Band 1, 2 or 3 within the department in the 2001-02 financial year.

(2) Is it the case that no persons from non-English speaking background were employed at SES Band 1, 2 or 3 within the department in the 2001-02 financial year.

(3) Is it the case that just one person with a disability was employed at SES Band 1, 2 or 3 within the department in the 2001-02 financial year.

(4) Is the Minister satisfied with the workplace diversity at senior levels of his department.

947  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) Has the workers’ compensation premium for the department increased in the 2002-03 financial year; if so, what is the percentage increase.

(2) What is the extra cost burden of the premium increase.

(3) Is it the case that an increased workers’ compensation claim frequency in the 2001-02 financial year is responsible for the increased premium in 2002-03.

948  Senator O’Brien: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) Is it the case that the provisions of the Chief Executive’s Instruction relating to procurement require departmental purchases over $100 000 to be subject to public tender.

(2) Is it the case that the public tender requirement is subject to exemptions; if so, can details of the exemption guidelines be provided.

(3) How many purchases over $100 000 in the 2001-02 financial year were exempted from the public tender guidelines.

(4) Did the Minister and/or his office have any involvement in the exemption of any purchases from public tender guidelines in the 2001-02 financial year.

949  Senator Nettle: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—

(1) Will the Minister consider changing Australia’s refugee program to allow groups to sponsor Falun Gong practitioners, who live in fear of persecution, to come to Australia, as has occurred in Canada.

(2) If such a change will not be considered, why does the Minister think it is inappropriate.

950  Senator Allison: To ask the Minister for Health and Ageing—Has the Government considered posting Medicare rebate cheques for accounts not yet paid directly to the practitioner, rather than to the patient; if so, what was the outcome of such consideration.