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Quarantine Amendment (Disallowing Permits) Bill 2011

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(Circulated by authority of Senator N Xenophon)




Quarantine Amendment (Disallowing Permits) Bill 2011



1. Short Title

This clause is a formal provision and specifies the short title of  the bill, once enacted, as the Quarantine Amendment (Disallowing Permits) Bill 2011 .



2. Commencement

This clause provides for the Act to commence on the day it receives the Royal Assent.



3. Schedules

This clause states that each Act specified in a Schedule to this Act is amended or repealed according to the provisions of this Act, according to its terms.



4. Schedule 1 - Amendments to the Quarantine Act 1908


Clause 1 inserts new provisions into section 13 of the Act which effectively make the Biosecurity Policy Determinations legislative instruments and provide that any import or removal permit issued otherwise than in accordance with such a disallowable Biosecurity Policy Determination are themselves disallowable by the Parliament.


Under section 13, the Governor-General is able to issue a Proclamation prohibiting the importation, introduction, bringing in of or removal, of a thing (ie. an animal, plant (whether moveable or not); and any other article, substance or thing (including, but not limited to, any kind of moveable property).


Such a Proclamation can provide that the importation, introduction, bringing in of or removal of a thing is prohibited unless the Director of Quarantine grants a permit to import, introduce, bring in or remove the thing.


Under this bill, such a permit will be a disallowable instrument unless it is covered by a Director’s determination, which is also a legislative instrument.


A Director’s determination can specify a thing and set out the conditions to be complied with to limit any quarantine risk associated with importing or removing the thing to an acceptably low level.


When the Director's determination is laid before Parliament, the Minister must also table a risk analysis in both Houses of Parliament and cause a motion to be moved to refer it to the relevant Committee in each House responsible for agricultural matters for report. These Committees should table their report no more than 15 sitting days after the determination is referred.