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Friday, 16 December 1983
Page: 4005


Senator HAINES(3.42) —Senator Martin rightly points out that this delegation clause has been raised by the Senate Standing Committee for the Scrutiny of Bills. In its tenth report, dated 19 October 1983, it had this to say in relation exactly to this clause-which at that stage was clause 94 of the previous Bill:

This clause also contains a now quite standard provision, in this case relating to the delegation of the powers of the Commission.

I point out that it has become a quite standard provision in a lot of legislation that the Minister or somebody delegates powers. The report continues :

This clause empowers both the Commission and the Sexual Discrimination Commissioner to delegate thier statutory powers of inquiry to other Commission Officers, or indeed to 'any other person or body of persons'. This power of delegation is not limited by reference to the qualifications of persons who may exercise the relevant powers. The Attorney-General's response states that, 'In view of the variety of functions which might be delegated, it would be impractical to list all the persons or bodies who or which might conceivably at any time in the future be considered able to exercise functions under the Bill or attempt to define the qualifications such persons or bodies should have'.

In view of that, the Committee then put in its report.

The Committee acknowledges the response of the Attorney-General which answers satisfactorily the concern it expressed in relation to clause 94.

Therefore, presumably, it satisfactorily answers the concern in relation to clause 104. The national committee, the relevant State committee on discrimination in employment and occupation or any approved statutory body established by a State, are not excluded or precluded from being used by the Commission to have powers delegated to it. For those reasons, we shall not be supporting this amendment.