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Notice given 9 May 2003

1442  Senator Ludwig: To ask the Minister representing the Attorney-General—

(1) How many breaches of the Legal Services Directions has the Office of Legal Services Coordination (OLSC) identified since the directions were first issued.

(2) On what date was each breach identified by the OLSC, and which agency and law firm was involved.

(3) In each case, what was the nature of the breach identified by the OLSC.

(4) In which cases was voluntary compliance achieved and in which cases was enforcement action taken.

(5) What systems does the OLSC have in place to monitor compliance by Commonwealth agencies with the directions.

(6) In each financial year, how many approvals have been sought for counsel fees above the thresholds in the directions.

(7) In each financial year, how many such approvals have been granted by: (a) the OLSC; and (b) the Attorney-General.

(8) In each financial year, how many such approvals have been ‘one-off’ and how many are ongoing.

(9) In each financial year, how many such approvals have for fees in excess of $3 800 per day.

(10) Has the OLSC attempted to update the estimate of the total Commonwealth legal services market since the March 1997 report, The Review of the Attorney-General’s Legal Practice ; if not, why not; if so, what is the current estimate.

1446  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for the Environment and Heritage—In relation to the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area:

(1) Is the Minister planning to change the management structure of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area by abolishing its independent board; if so, what is the time frame for this change.

(2) Is the Minister negotiating with the Queensland Government in relation to new World Heritage legislation; if so, what arrangements for the management of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area are being proposed in the legislation.

(3) Since the changed World Heritage funding arrangements came into effect, what has been the impact on the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area funding.

1447  Senator Harris: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) (a) Can the Minister advise why the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) was set up with such restricted terms of reference; (b) why is it that the OGTR can only look at aspects of the introduction of genetically-modified (GM) material into Australia under the terms of ‘health and environment’.

(2) Why was the Gene Technology Grains Committee (GTGC) put together with a majority of ‘pro-GM’ interests; and (b) why did it ignore submissions that do not agree with its philosophy.

(3) (a) Is the Minister aware that the ‘Canola Industry Stewardship Protocols’ ignore any aspect of possible and very probable on-farm contamination of GM canola into non-GM canola, either through direct grains contamination or, the most likely and by far the greatest source of probable contamination, environmental transfer via pollen, bees, etc.; and (b) what steps has the department taken to scrutinise the possibility of contamination of non-GM canola.

(4) Can the Minister explain how and why the GTGC has been able to place the onus, responsibility and, ultimately, liability on everyone else except the technology providers in its ‘Canola Industry Stewardship Protocols’.

(5) Can a copy of the final report relating to Bayer for Invigor Canola, Crop Management Plan , that was passed by the OGTR, be provided to the Senate and the industry.

(6) Why is it that the New South Wales Farmers’ Association (NSWFA) and the Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) refuse to survey their own members to gain a grass roots feeling of GM canola.

(7) Can documentation be provided on how many members or executive members of the NSWFA and the VFF were invited or taken on a fact-finding tour to the United States of America by the technology providers.

(8) (a) Is the Minister aware that the New Zealand Agricultural Minister said, in late 2002, that ‘New Zealand was very unlikely to gain a Free Trade Agreement with America because of our stance on GM crops and our stance on nuclear ships’; and (b) what commitments has the Australian Government made to be able to have a free trade agreement with America.

1450  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—With reference to the answer to question on notice no. 1139 (Senate Hansard , 24 March 2003, p. 10056):

(1) What is the definition of the word ‘depression’ as used in the answer.

(2) What percentage of detainees have suffered, or are suffering, from depression.

(3) What percentage of detainees are receiving medication for depression.

(4) How many detainees have been diagnosed with depression or a similar condition in the past 5 years.

(5) (a) How many detainees have received medication for such an illness in the past 5 years; and (b) how many of these detainees were: (i) children, (ii) men, and (iii) women.

(6) How many detainees have received other forms of treatment for such an illness in the past 5 years; and (b) how many of these detainees were: (i) children, (ii) men, and (iii) women.