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Tuesday, 12 May 2009
Page: 3596


Mr Price asked the Attorney-General, in writing, on 10 March 2009:

(1)   Did the ‘Semple report’ (Des Semple and the Attorney-General’s Department, Striking the Right Balance, August 2008) postulate that merging the Federal Magistrates Court with the Family Court would yield savings in administrative costs.

(2)   Did the ‘Semple report’ estimate the cost savings associated with the merger; if so, what is the sum of the cost savings; if not, why not.

(3)   Has his department estimated the cost savings associated with the merger; if so, what is the sum of the cost savings; if not, why not.


Mr McClelland (Attorney-General) —The answer to the honourable member’s question is as follows:

(1)   The Report of the Review of the delivery by the federal courts of family law services, Future Governance Options for Federal Family Law Courts in Australia: Striking the Right Balance, comments that the ‘amalgamation of the administration and corporate services in the family law area would provide economies of scale and avoid the current duplication of administrative and corporate services’ of the Family Court of Australia and the Federal Magistrates Court (paragraph 69).

(2)   The Report does not include an estimate of the cost savings. This was not necessary for the purposes of the Review.

(3)   My Department has undertaken estimates of the cost savings. The Government is considering the estimates.