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Water Amendment Bill 2008

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5640

2008

 

The Parliament of the

Commonwealth of Australia

 

THE SENATE

 

 

 

 

 

Water Amendment Bill 2008

 

 

 

(1)     Schedule 2, item 78, page 302 (lines 18 to 25), item to be opposed .

 [new knowledge component]

(2)     Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162B  At the end of Part 12

Add:

258  Community Impact Statements

             (1)  For each region in the Basin in which the Commonwealth purchases or intends to purchase any privately-held water entitlement, the Minister must publish a Community Impact Statement specifying:

                     (a)  social and cultural impacts;

                     (b)  economic impacts;

                     (c)  environmental impacts;

                     (d)  the criteria used by the Commonwealth in deciding to purchase that water entitlement;

                     (e)  any conditions upon which the purchase was made;

                      (f)  other water entitlements the Commonwealth is considering purchasing in the region.

             (2)  A report published under subsection (1) must specify the modelling and evidence upon which the impacts referred to in paragraphs (1)(a), (b) and (c) were determined.

             (3)  The Community Impact Statement must be used in determining the allocation of funds under any structural adjustment package determined under section 259.

[Community Impact Statements]



(3)     Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162C  At the end of Part 12

Add:

259  Structural adjustment package

             (1)  The Minister must, by legislative instrument, determine a scheme in the nature of a structural adjustment package to allocate appropriate funding to communities affected by the purchase by the Commonwealth of any privately-held water entitlements.

             (2)  A scheme determined under subsection (1) must provide for structural adjustment assistance to be allocated to communities to assist them to adjust to:

                     (a)  reduced water availability;

                     (b)  reduced economic activity associated with the closure of farming or other enterprises;

                     (c)  changes in land use.

             (3)  In determining the amount of funding to be allocated to any community under the scheme, regard must be had to the Community Impact Statement in relation to the affected community published under section 258.

[structural adjustment package]

(4)     Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162D  At the end of Part 12

Add:

260  Water saving infrastructure program

             (1)  The Minister must, by legislative instrument, determine a scheme to achieve water efficiency measures through Commonwealth investment in water saving infrastructure.

             (2)  A scheme determined under subsection (1) must set clear targets for water to be saved from on-farm and off-farm infrastructure projects.

             (3)  A report is to be prepared as at 1 July 2009, and for each subsequent six-month period, containing a schedule for each project being undertaken or planned and, for each project:

                     (a)  the expected water savings;

                     (b)  the share of savings to be dedicated to environmental, irrigation or other purposes;

                     (c)  the licence associated with those savings.

[water saving infrastructure program]

(5)     Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162E  At the end of Part 12

Add:

261  Water market transparency

             (1)  The Minister must, by legislative instrument, determine a scheme to ensure transparent operation of the water market in respect of the purchase of water entitlements by the Commonwealth.

             (2)  The scheme must ensure that there is disclosure of information in relation to price, volume, security, location, terms and conditions attached to the purchase of entitlements; whether the purchase of water entitlements was contingent upon the purchase of real property rights and, if so: the criteria by which it was determined to proceed with the purchase; and the evidentiary basis for any subsequent changes to the use of property so acquired.

             (3)  The scheme must also provide for a real-time or live exchange disclosing irrigation region, latest sale and value, bid and offer and price by megalitre.

[water market transparency]

(6)     Schedule 2, page 318 (after line 32), after item 162, insert:

162F  At the end of Part 12

Add:

262  Inquiry into bulk water arrangements

             (1)  The Minister must cause an inquiry to be held into the effects of Commonwealth water purchases from bulk water arrangements.

             (2)  The inquiry must consider what steps the Minister should take to prevent third party effects within bulk water arrangements on remaining parties. 

             (3)  The inquiry must report by 1 July 2009 and the Minister must cause a copy of the report to be tabled in each House of the Parliament within 5 sitting days of receiving the report.

             (4)  The Minister must have regard to the recommendations of the report of the inquiry in proceeding with subsequent purchases of water from bulk water arrangements.

[inquiry into bulk water arrangements]