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Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety (Consequential Amendments) Bill 1998

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1998

 

 

                   THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

                                                HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

AUSTRALIAN RADIATION PROTECTION AND NUCLEAR SAFETY (CONSEQUENTIAL AMENDMENTS) BILL 1998

 

 

 

 

                                              EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Circulated by authority of the Minister for Health and Aged Care,

the Hon. Michael Wooldridge, MP)



AUSTRALIAN RADIATION PROTECTION AND NUCLEAR SAFETY (CONSEQUENTIAL AMENDMENTS) BILL 1998

 

 

GENERAL OUTLINE

 

 

The purpose of this Bill is to make consequential changes to the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987 (the ANSTO Act) and to provide for transitional arrangements to cover the operation of controlled facilities and the handling of radiation sources while applications for licences to cover these facilities and activities are being made under the proposed Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998 (the ARPANS Act) .

 

For this purpose, the Bill:

 

(a)     repeals Parts VI and VIIA of the ANSTO Act under which, respectively, the Safety Review Committee and the Nuclear Safety Bureau are established, as the functions of the Committee and Bureau will be transferred to the CEO of the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Agency, established under the ARPANS Act;

 

(b)           makes transitional arrangements for the transfer of the assets and liabilities of the Nuclear Safety Bureau to the Commonwealth, and confers on the CEO of ARPANSA the powers of the Director of the Nuclear Safety Bureau in relation to the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation during the transitional period before the offences provisions commence to operate under the ARPANS Act;

 

(c)            repeals the Environment Protection (Nuclear Codes) Act 1978 .  That Act provides for the development and endorsement of Codes of Practice which will be undertaken under the auspices of ARPANSA;

 

(d)           provides that Commonwealth entities have a transition period of 6 months after the ARPANS Act commences to apply for a licence to authorise specified activities under that Act.

 

 

FINANCIAL IMPACT STATEMENT

 

 

The Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998 will not have any significant financial impact for the Commonwealth.  There will be transfers of monies between Commonwealth Departments.

 



AUSTRALIAN RADIATION PROTECTION AND NUCLEAR SAFETY (CONSEQUENTIAL AMENDMENTS) BILL 1998

 

 

 

NOTES ON CLAUSES

 

 

PART 1  - PRELIMINARY

 

Clause 1 - Short title

 

This is a formal provision that specifies the short title of the Act as the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety (Consequential Amendments) Act 1998 .

 

Clause 2 - Commencement

 

Subclause 2(1) provides that the Act will commence on the same day as the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998 commences.

 

Subclause 2(2) provides that the repeal of the Environment Protection (Nuclear Codes) Act 1978 (Item 5 of Schedule 1 to the Act) will commence on a date to be fixed by Proclamation.

 

Clause 3 - Schedule(s)

 

This clause provides that, subject to clause 2, every Act specified in the Schedule to this Act is either amended or repealed as set out in that Schedule, and any other item included in the Schedule is to have effect according to its terms.

 

SCHEDULE 1 - AMENDMENTS, REPEAL AND TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

 

PART 1 - AMENDMENTS AND REPEAL

 

Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987

 

Items 1 and 3 of this Schedule have the effect of repealing Parts VI and VIIA of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987 under which, respectively, the Safety Review Committee and the Nuclear Safety Bureau are established  The functions of the Committee and Bureau will be transferred to the CEO established under the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998 .

 

Item 2  increases the contract amount applying under section 31 of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987 from $1 million to $5 million.

 

Item 4 omits references to sections 37D, 37N and 37T in paragraph 42(1)(b) of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987 .

 

Environmental Protection (Nuclear Codes) Act 1978

 

Item 5 repeals the Environmental Protection (Nuclear Codes) Act 1978.

 

PART 2 - TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

 

Item 6 - Transfer of assets and liabilities of the Nuclear Safety Bureau

 

Subitem 6(1) provides that at the time this Act commences to operate, the assets and liabilities of the Nuclear Safety Bureau are transferred to the Commonwealth and the Commonwealth becomes the Bureau's successor in law in relation to an asset or liability so transferred.

 

Subitem 6(2) provides that any instrument or document relating to a transferred asset or liability continues to have effect after this Act commences as if a reference in that instrument or document to the Nuclear Safety Bureau were a reference to the Commonwealth.

 

Subitem 6(3) sets out the meaning of words used in Subitem 6(1), including “asset”, “commencement time” and “liability”.

 

Item 7 - Powers of the CEO during the transition period

 

Subitem 7(1) provides that despite the repeal by this Act of Part VIIA of the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation Act 1987 (the ANSTO Act), the CEO of ARPANSA (an office established under the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1998 - the “ARPANS Act”) is, for a period beginning on the day this Act commences until the day the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation is either granted or refused a licence under section 31 of the ARPANS Act, to be treated as having all the powers and functions conferred under Part VIIA of the ANSTO Act on the Director of the Nuclear Safety Bureau in relation to the Australian Nuclear Science and Technology Organisation.

 

Subitem 7(2) sets out the meaning of certain words used in subitem 7(1), including “ANSTO”, and “CEO” and “ANSTO transition period”. “ANSTO transition period” refers to the period beginning on the day on which the ARPANS Act commenced and ending on the day on which ANSTO is granted or refused any licence under clause 31 of the ARPANS Act.

 

Item 8 - Prohibitions not to apply to certain activities and persons

 

Subitem 8(1) provides that if, during the transition period, a person lodges an application for a licence under the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1989 to cover specified activities to be undertaken by specified persons, then the prohibitions contained in clauses 29 and 30 of that Act do not apply in respect of those specified activities in relation to the specified persons until the application is either granted or refused.

 

Subitem 8(2) provides that the “transition period” refers to the period of 6 months beginning on the day on which the Australian Radiation Protection and Nuclear Safety Act 1989 commenced.