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Thursday, 11 October 1984
Page: 2257

(Question No. 1863)

Mr Hunt asked the Minister for Trade, upon notice, on 3 October 1984:

(1) Has the newly-created position of Principal Advisor, Business/Union Consultations, in his Department been re-advertised; if so, (a) what is the closing date of applications for the position and (b) why was this decision taken.

(2) Has Mr Ted Wilshire been required to re-submit his application for this position; if so, has he done so.

(3) Was an objection lodged by one of the members of the original interviewing panel to the Chairman of the Public Service Board; if so, was the objection made in writing and on what grounds was the objection lodged.

(4) What were the precedents for the variation of the earlier panel which interviewed Mr Wilshire to include representatives of the ACTU and MTIA.

(5) If the position has been re-advertised, and if Mr Wilshire is an applicant, will the interviewing panel again be varied in this way.

(6) How many other variations of interviewing panels to include a representative of the ACTU have been made since he became Minister for Trade.

Mr Lionel Bowen —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

(1) No.

(2) See answer to (1) above.

(3) No. However a member of the selection committee (an officer of the Public Service Board, Mr J. Foley) informed the Secretary, Department of Trade that, although he agreed with the other members of the committee that Mr Wilshire was the only applicant who met the selection criteria and that Mr Wilshire could be regarded as suitable for promotion, he considered that the position should be re -advertised and on this occasion be open for appointment or term engagement to persons who are not officers of the Public Service. Mr Foley also passed a copy of this advice to the Chairman of the Public Service Board.

(4) Mr Wilshire was interviewed once for this position which was created as a result of the prices and incomes accord. In addition to officers of the Department of Trade and the Public Service Board, the selection committee included representatives of the ACTU and MTIA. Representatives of these organisations were included on the committee because of the importance of the position to the implementation of the accord. Persons from outside the Public Service were represented on the selection committee for the level 3 position of Director, Trade Commissioner Service. This practice has also been followed recently in relation to the filling of some vacancies in the Trade Commissioner Service. I am advised that some other Departments have also used the practice.

(5) See answer to (1) above.

(6) None.