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Tuesday, 15 March 2005
Page: 84

Senator ELLISON (Minister for Justice and Customs) (6:09 PM) —The government, like the opposition, do not support the Democrat proposal for the continuation of the requirement to appoint a presidential member or senior member to multimember panels. As was noted in the Senate committee’s report, it is not a requirement for a senior member to hold legal qualifications. Removing the requirement that a multimember panel be constituted by a presidential or senior member will give the president greater flexibility in managing the tribunal’s workload. It will also ensure that the constitution of the tribunal will be based on the needs of the case at hand and not the status of the members. That is something which we believe is essential for the good working of the tribunal and for it to keep its flexibility. For those reasons the government will not be supporting the Democrat proposal.

The TEMPORARY CHAIRMAN (Senator Moore)—The question is that item 47 stand as printed.

Question agreed to.