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Thursday, 29 March 1984
Page: 843


Senator GARETH EVANS (Attorney-General)(10.07) —I move:

That the Bill be now read a second time.

The purpose of this Bill is to make a number of amendments to legislation consequential upon the provisions of the Judiciary Amendment Bill (No. 2) 1984 for the establishment of the Australian Government Solicitor. A number of Commonwealth Acts contain references to the Crown Solicitor or to a Deputy Crown Solicitor. A number of these references are such that they may not be conveniently dealt with by the interpretation provision contained in that Bill, by which references to the Crown Solicitor or a Deputy Crown Solicitor were to be converted into references to the Australian Government Solicitor. It has therefore been found necessary to make specific amendments to the Acts in question.

Generally speaking, the provisions which are amended by the present Bill are such as to require a person to be identified for the purposes of the relevant provision. The approach taken in this Bill is to amend those provisions so that references to the Crown Solicitor or a Deputy Crown Solicitor are translated into references to the Secretary to the Attorney-General's Department or to an officer of that Department authorised by him to act in the name of the Australian Government Solicitor. It will be recalled that, in setting up the Australian Government Solicitor as a body corporate, it is intended that all acts done in the name of the body corporate shall be done by the Secretary to the Attorney-General's Department or by legally qualified officers of that Department authorised by the Secretary for the purpose. The Bill is purely of a technical and consequential kind. It is proposed to be debated cognately later today with the Judiciary Amendment Bill (No. 2) 1984. I commend this Bill to the Senate.

Debate (on motion by Senator Durack) adjourned.