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Tuesday, 8 March 2005
Page: 46


Senator FERRIS (3:34 PM) —On behalf of Senator Tchen and the Standing Committee on Regulations and Ordinances, I give notice that 15 days hence Senator Tchen will move:

   That the Guidelines in relation to the exercise of Compliance Powers in the Building and Construction Industry, made under section 88AGA of the Workplace Relations Act 1996, be disallowed.

I seek leave to incorporate in Hansard a short summary of the matters raised by the committee.

Leave granted.

The summary read as follows—

Guidelines in relation to the exercise of Compliance Powers in the Building and Construction Industry

These Guidelines specify guidelines to be used by a delegate of the Secretary to the Department of Employment and Workplace Relations in exercising powers under Part VA of the Act, such as requiring a person to provide information or documents in relation to a building industry investigation.

Clause 15 of these Guidelines specifies limitations on the use of the power to issue a notice. Paragraph (a) states that a power must only be used for building industry investigations, but must not be used for matters that are minor or petty. This reflects subsection 88AA(3) of the Workplace Relations Act 1996 (as amended). Questions may be raised as to whether a matter is ‘minor or petty’. The Committee has entered into correspondence with the Minister on this matter.