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Employment, Education and Training Amendment Bill 2000

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1998-99

 

 

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION AND TRAINING AMENDMENT BILL 1999

 

 

EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Circulated by authority of the Minister for Education, Training and Youth Affairs,

the Hon Dr David Kemp MP)

 



EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION AND TRAINING AMENDMENT BILL 1999

 

 

OUTLINE

 

The Employment, Education and Training Act 1988 (“the Act”) established the National Board of Employment, Education and Training (“the Board”) to provide the Minister with advice on matters relating to employment, education and training.  The Act established Councils, and provided for committees and counsellors to be appointed to assist the Board and the Minister.

 

Under the Act, the Australian Language and Literacy Council, the Australian Research Council, the Employment and Skills Council, the Higher Education Council and the Schools Council report to the Minister through the Board.  These arrangements have become cumbersome and the Board and its Councils no longer provide the focus of advice that the Government requires. 

 

The Councils, other than the Australian Research Council, are no longer in operation.

 

This Bill provides for the abolition of the Board, the Australian Language and Literacy Council, the Employment and Skills Council and the Schools Council and the Higher Education Council.  The Australian Research Council will continue as an independent Council, with similar functions, reporting directly to the Minister.  The Bill provides for amendments required to continue mechanisms for the appointment of committees and counsellors which will assist the Australian Research Council.  The Bill also has the effect of including the University of the Sunshine Coast and the University of Notre Dame Australia within the definition of “higher education institution” in the Act.  Other technical and consequential amendments are also included.

 

 

 

FINANCIAL IMPACT

 

The Bill will have no identifiable financial impact.

 

 



 

EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION AND TRAINING AMENDMENT BILL 1999

 

 

NOTES ON CLAUSES

 

 

Clause 1 - Short Title

 

This clause would provide for the Act to be cited as the Employment, Education and Training Amendment Act 1999.

 

 

Clause 2 - Commencement

 

This clause would provide for the Act to commence on the day on which it receives the Royal Assent.

 

 

Clause 3 - Schedule(s)

 

This clause would provide that each Act which is specified in a Schedule to this Bill would be amended or repealed in accordance with the applicable item in the Schedule concerned, and any other item in a Schedule to this Act has effect according to its terms.

 

 



 

SCHEDULE 1 - EMPLOYMENT, EDUCATION

AND TRAINING ACT 1988

 

PART 1 - AMENDMENTS

 

 

Items 1, 4 and 5

 

Subsection 3(1) of the Employment, Education and Training Act 1988 (“the Act”) contains definitions used within the Act.  Certain defined terms will no longer be required because of the effect of the proposed amendments.  These items repeal the definition of “Board”, “parent body” and “school system”.

 

 

Item 2

 

Redefines the definition of “Council” in subsection 3(1) as the Australian Research Council.

 

 

Item 3

 

Redefines the definition of “higher education institution” in subsection 3(1) by linking the definition to the institutions listed in the Tables in subsection 4(1) of the Higher Education Funding Act 1988, rather than to Schedule 1 which is to be repealed by item 66.  This has the effect of including the University of the Sunshine Coast and the University of Notre Dame Australia within the definition of “higher education institution”.

 

 

Item 6

 

Repeals section 4, which provides for a variation to Schedule 1.  As Schedule 1 is to be repealed by item 66, section 4 is no longer required.

 

 

Item 7

 

Repeals Part II of the Act which presently provides for the establishment, functions, powers, constitution and meetings of the National Board of Employment, Education and Training (“the Board”). 

 

 

Items 8 and 9

 

Repeal the headings to Part III and Division 1 of Part III of the Act and substitute new headings.

 



 

Items 10 and 11

 

Repeal sections 23, 24, 25 and 26 to reflect the abolition of the Schools Council, the Higher Education Council, the Employment and Skills Council and the Australian Language and Literacy Council and provides for the retention of the Australian Research Council.

 

 

Item 12

 

Clarifies that any recommendations made by the Australian Research Council to the Minister at paragraph 27(1)(a) are to be in writing.

 

 

Items 13 and 16

 

Make technical amendments to subsection 27(1).

 

 

Items 14, 15, 17, 21 and 31

 

Remove references to the Board at subsections 27(1) 29(1) and 31(2) to reflect the abolition of the Board by items 7.  Items 14, 17 and 21, substitute references to the Minister in subsections 27(1) and 29(1).

 

 

Item 18

 

Adds a new paragraph (d) to subsection 27(1) to include among the functions of the Australian Research Council, the preparation of reports to the Minister under section 30.

 

 

Items 19, 20 and 24

 

Repeal sections 27A and 28 and subsections 27(2) and 29(2) to reflect the abolition of the Board and the Australian Language and Literacy Council.

 

 

Items 22, 23, 25 and 27

 

Make technical amendments to subsections 29(1), 29(3) and 29(4) to reflect the abolition of Councils by items 10, 11 and 20.

 

 

Item 26

 

Inserts a new subsection 29(3A) to provide for the tabling of any direction or guideline given by the Minister to the Council.



Item 28

 

Repeals section 30 and substitutes a new section which deals with the content, timing and tabling requirements of reports prepared for the Minister by the Council.

 

 

Items 29, 30, 32, 33, 35-37 and 39

 

Make minor technical amendments to sections 31, 32, 33, 33A, 33B, 35, 35A, 35B, 35C, 35D, 35E, 35F and 35G.  Where reference is made to “Councils” this is amended to the singular.  The heading of Division 2 of Part III is also repealed and substituted with a new heading to reflect the fact that there is now only one Council.

 

 

Item 34

 

Repeals subsection 32(3) and substitutes a new subsection permitting the Minister to appoint an officer or employee of the Australian Public Service as a member of the Council.

 

 

Item 38

 

Repeals section 34, which deals with the powers of the Chairperson of the Board.  The Board is abolished by item 7.

 

 

Items 40-41

 

Substitute “a Chairperson” with “the Chairperson” at subsections 35C(1) and 35F(2).

 

 

Item 42

 

Repeals section 36 and substitutes a new section permitting the Minister to establish a committee to assist the Council.

 

 

Item 43

 

Repeals subsection 37(1) and substitutes a new subsection providing for the appointment of committee members by the Council, subject to the approval of the Minister. 

 

 

Item 44

 

Repeals paragraph 37(2)(a) to remove the redundant reference to “parent bodies” in relation to the constitution of a committee.

 



 

Items 45, 47-49, 52, 57-63, and 65

 

Amend sections 37, 55, 57, 61,62 and 63, to remove references to the Board and to reflect the fact that there is now only one Council.

 

 

Item 46

 

Repeals section 38 which deals with the functions of committees.  New provisions have been substituted to reflect the fact that there is now only one Council.

 

 

Item 50

 

Adds a new subsection 55(4) which deals with the resolution of conflicts between the Director and the Council.

 

 

Item 51

 

Repeals subsection 57(1) and substitutes a new subsection permitting the Minister to appoint Counsellors after consultation with the Chairperson of the Council. 

 

 

Items 53-56

 

Amend section 60 to remove references to the Board and to reflect the fact that there is now only one Council.

 

 

Item 64

 

Inserts a new subsection 62(3) permitting the Minister to delegate his or her power under subsection 55(4) [inserted by item 50], to the Secretary of the Department.

 

 

Item 66

 

Repeals Schedule 1 which is no longer required with the abolition of the Higher Education Council and the changes to the definition of “higher education institution” in subsection 3(1) made by item 3.

 

 



PART 2 - TRANSITIONAL PROVISIONS

 

 

Item 67

 

Inserts definitions of “amended Act”, “Board” and “commencement” to apply in respect of the transitional provisions.

 

 

Item 68

 

Clarifies that the Australian Research Council referred to in section 23 of the amended Act is a continuation of the Council referred to in paragraph 23(d) of the Act.

 

 

Item 69

 

Provides that a matter referred to the Australian Research Council before the commencement of this Part is to continue as if it had been referred after the commencement.

 

 

Item 70

 

Provides that if immediately before the commencement a person held an appointment with the Australian Research Council they continue to hold that appointment on the same terms and conditions for the remained of their appointment term.  It also provides that if a person was the Chairperson of the Australian Research Council on a part-time basis and appointed to the Board on a full-time basis, that person is to continue as the full-time Chairperson of the Australian Research Council under the existing terms and conditions of the full-time appointment to the Board.

 

 

Item 71

 

Provides that a committee established to assist the Australian Research Council which existed immediately before the commencement is to continue as a committee assisting the Australian Research Council as if it was a committee established under subsection 36(1) after the commencement.

 

 

Item 72

 

Provides that a person who was a member of a committee established to assist the Australian Research Council before the commencement, is to continue to be as a member of that committee for the remainder of the original appointment period and under the same terms and conditions, as if they had been appointed under subsection 37(1) after the commencement.

 



 

Item 73

 

Provides that a person who was a Counsellor appointed to give advice to the Australian Research Council before the commencement, is to continue as a Counsellor for the remainder of their original appointment period and under their existing terms and conditions as if they had been appointed under subsection 57(1) after the commencement.

 

 

Item 74

 

Provides for the continuation of existing directions or guidelines made under subsection 29(1).

 

 

Item 75

 

Provides that any determinations made in relation to the Australian Research Council or a committee established to assist that Council under subsection 60(2) before the commencement is to be treated as a determination under subsection 60(2A) after the commencement.