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Notice given 28 July 2003

1663  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to the sale of the former Gan Gan Army Camp at Port Stephens:

(1) When was the Gan Gan Army Camp sold.

(2) Which organisation purchased the property.

(3) What was the sale price for the property.

(4) (a) What was the closing date for expressions of interest; and (b) how many expressions of interest for the property were submitted.

(5) (a) When was a preferred buyer selected; and (b) what process was used to select the preferred buyer.

(6) What was the date of settlement for the sale.

(7) (a) Is it normal for Defence property sales to be settled so quickly; and (b) why did the settlement process for this sale occur so quickly.

(8) (a) What is the total value of all Commonwealth-funded building works at the Gan Gan Army Camp site over the past 5 financial years; and (b) can a breakdown of these works be provided.

(9) Did the New South Wales Government (either through a New South Wales Minister or a government agency) express any interest in acquiring the Gan Gan Army Camp at any time during the past 5 years; if so, can the details of each expression of interest made be provided.

(10) Did Defence respond to any of these expressions of interest; is so, what was Defence’s response to each expression of interest.

(11) Has there been an environmental evaluation of the Gan Gan Army Camp site at any time in the past 5 financial years; if so, can a copy be provided of each environmental evaluation report written in this period.

1665  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to the F/A-18 Hornet Upgrade project (Project AIR 5376) in the Defence Capability Plan:

(1) Can a description of all of the phases of this project be provided.

(2) (a) What was the original timeline for the completion of the project, including the dates for each of the phases in the project; and (b) when was the project due to be completed.

(3) (a) What was the original budget for this project; and (b) what were the individual budgets for each of the phases in the project.

(4) (a) What is the current schedule for the completion of this project; (b) what are the completion dates for each of the phases in the project; and (c) when is the project due to be completed.

(5) Has the schedule for this project changed; if so, why.

(6) How would any schedule change with this project impact on future capability.

(7) (a) What is the current budget for the project; and (b) what are the the budgets for each of the phases in the project.

(8) What has been the cost of this project to date.

(9) Has the projected budget for this project increased; if so, why.

1668  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to the Defence and Industry Advisory Council

(1) When was the council established.

(2) Who established the council.

(3) For what purpose was the council established.

(4) Can a copy of the council’s terms of reference be provided.

(5) What is the membership of the council.

(6) What are the reporting arrangements for the council, for example: (a) to whom does it report; (b) how regularly are such reports made; and (c) what do the reports contain.

(7) Can a list be provided of meeting dates for the council since its establishment.

1669  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) Has anyone from the Australian Defence Force (ADF), or on behalf of the ADF, been to the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF)  Ohakea Airbase in Wellington, New Zealand, at any time since 1 January 2002 with the express purpose of recruiting pilots from the RNZAF; if so, on what dates did this active recruitment take place.

(2) Why did the ADF seek to actively recruit pilots from the RNZAF.

(3) How many pilots have been recruited to the ADF from the RNZAF since 1 January 2002.

(4) Has the ADF undertaken similar active recruitment exercises for pilots in any other countries; if so: (a) what were these countries; and (b) how many pilots were actively recruited from each of these other countries since 1 January 2002.

(5) What is the immigration status of the pilots that have been recruited from the RNZAF since 1 January 2002.

(6) Given that the RNZAF pilots were not Australian citizens, or permanent residents of Australia at the time of their enlistment in the ADF, on what basis were they permitted to become members of the ADF.

(7) How many of the overseas recruits are now: (a) permanent residents of Australia; or (b) Australian citizens.

(8) Are the RNZAF recruits eligible for veterans’ entitlements and military compensation before they become Australian citizens, for instance: (a) while they are on a special category visa; or (b) if they are only permanent residents.

1670  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—Can a list be provided of all the Defence property sold during the 2002-03 financial year, indicating for each property: (a) the date of sale; (b) the property name and/or address; (c) the type of property (vacant/buildings); (d) the size of the property; (e) the type of sale (auction, request for proposal, advertised price); and (f) the sale price.

1671  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to the sale and leaseback of the Australian Defence College (ADC) at Weston Creek in Canberra:

(1) When was the property sold.

(2) What was the sale price.

(3) When was this sale advertised.

(4) (a) Who managed the sale process; and (b) how much were they paid.

(5) How was the sale for this property conducted.

(6) Was there a valuation done on the property prior to sale; if so, what was the result of that valuation.

(7) Has there been any valuation of the 5.2 hectares of land on which the College is situated; if so, what was the result of this valuation.

(8) How many bids were received.

(9) Which organisations submitted bids.

(10) What was the range of bids for the property.

(11) Why did Defence choose to accept the winning bid.

(12) Who took the decision to accept the winning bid; for example, was the decision taken within Defence or by the Minister.

(13) When was this decision taken.

(14) What rent for the Australian Defence College will Defence pay in the first year of the lease.

(15) What rent will be paid in the second and subsequent years of the lease.

1672  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to Defence asset sales and for each financial year since 1996-97:

(1) What is the total amount of revenue raised by Defence from asset sales.

(2) What is the amount of revenue from the sales that Defence has returned to consolidated revenue.

1673  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to the sale of the former storage depot at Somerton in Victoria:

(1) When was the decision taken to sell the depot at Somerton.

(2) When was this sale advertised.

(3) When was the property sold.

(4) What was the sale price.

(5) (a) Who managed the sale process; and (b) how much were they paid.

(6) How was the sale for this property conducted.

(7) Is it normal to offer property for sale on more than one type of contract.

(8) (a) Why were ‘conditional’ bids allowed; and (b) what were the nature of the outstanding issues with the sale that allowed the use of conditional bids.

(9) Who took the decision to allow conditional/unconditional bids.

(10) How many bids were received.

(11) Which organisations and/or individuals submitted bids.

(12) How many conditional/unconditional offers were there.

(13) What was the range of bids for the property on the conditional/unconditional contracts.

(14) (a) Why did Defence choose to accept the bid from Peet and Co.; and (b) was the bid from Peet and Co. the lowest bid received.

(15) On what basis did Defence choose to accept the lowest bid.

(16) (a) Who took the decision to accept bid by Peet and Co.; for example, was the decision taken within Defence or by the Minister or the Parliamentary Secretary; and (b) when was this decision taken.

(17) How long did Defence expect the outstanding issues would take to be resolved.

(18) What was the most likely outcome of this matter.

(19) Why did Defence not wait until the outstanding issues were resolved.

(20) Would Defence have received a higher price for the property if it had waited until the outstanding issues were resolved.

(21) Did Defence accept the unconditional bid by Peet and Co. so that the sale could be processed in the 2002-03 financial year.

1674  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Finance and Administration—

(1) Can a breakdown be provided of all expenditure (such as advertising costs, administrative costs, staff costs, agents fees, consultants fees, design fees etc) incurred by the Government in preparing for the sale and leaseback of Russell Offices in Canberra.

(2) Given that the proposed sale of Russell Offices has been abandoned, has any compensation been paid to the property sales consultant that won a $264 000 contract to manage the sale process.

(3) Has any money out of the $264 000 been paid to the contractor.

(4) Has the contractor made any claim against the Commonwealth for damages and/or compensation as a result of the abandonment of the proposed sale.