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Tuesday, 28 March 2017
Page: 3465

Mrs PRENTICE (RyanAssistant Minister for Social Services and Disability Services) (18:08): I would like to thank members for their contributions to the debate on the bill in front of us—the Crimes Amendment (Penalty Unit) Bill 2017. This bill will strengthen the value of the Commonwealth penalty unit to effectively punish criminal offenders and deter unlawful behaviour. This bill amends section 4AA of the Crimes Act, which prescribes the value of monetary penalties across all Commonwealth legislation and territory ordinances. The bill will increase the value of the penalty unit from $180 to $210, with effect from 1 July 2017. It will also delay the first automatic adjustment of the penalty unit to the consumer price index until 1 July 2020, with indexation to occur every three years following that date.

Increasing the amount of the penalty unit will result in higher financial penalties for all criminal offences across the Commonwealth statute book. This bill will ensure that courts can continue to impose appropriate financial penalties to combat crime and improve community safety in Australia. I commend the bill to the House.

Question agreed to.

Bill read a second time.