Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document


Previous Fragment    Next Fragment

Notice given 9 May 2003

1442  Senator Ludwig: To ask the Minister representing the Attorney-General—

(1) How many breaches of the Legal Services Directions has the Office of Legal Services Coordination (OLSC) identified since the directions were first issued.

(2) On what date was each breach identified by the OLSC, and which agency and law firm was involved.

(3) In each case, what was the nature of the breach identified by the OLSC.

(4) In which cases was voluntary compliance achieved and in which cases was enforcement action taken.

(5) What systems does the OLSC have in place to monitor compliance by Commonwealth agencies with the directions.

(6) In each financial year, how many approvals have been sought for counsel fees above the thresholds in the directions.

(7) In each financial year, how many such approvals have been granted by: (a) the OLSC; and (b) the Attorney-General.

(8) In each financial year, how many such approvals have been ‘one-off’ and how many are ongoing.

(9) In each financial year, how many such approvals have for fees in excess of $3 800 per day.

(10) Has the OLSC attempted to update the estimate of the total Commonwealth legal services market since the March 1997 report, The Review of the Attorney-General’s Legal Practice ; if not, why not; if so, what is the current estimate.

1443  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to the answer to question on notice no. 1186, which indicated that $50.3 million was spent on ‘legal/health expenses’ under the ‘consultants and professional services’ line item in the 2001-02 financial year:

(1) Can a full breakdown be provided of the $50.3 million spent on ‘legal/health expenses’ in the 2001-02 financial year.

(2) How much was spent on ‘legal/health expenses’ in each financial year since 1996-97.

(3) Can a full breakdown be provided of expenditure on ‘legal/health expenses’ for each financial year since 1996-97.

1444  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—With reference to the answer to question on notice no. 1186:

(1) With reference to the breakdown provided of the ‘consultants and professional services’ line item for the 2001-02 financial year: Can the same breakdown be provided for all previous financial years for which the information is available.

(2) With reference to the breakdown provided of all professional service provider contracts let by Defence groups in 2001-02: Can the same breakdown be provided for all previous financial years for which the information is available.

1445  Senator Evans: To ask the Minister for Defence—

(1) (a) Have any Hawk lead-in fighters been used in training exercises in South Australia during the past 12 months, with the full or partial purpose being to assess the safety of using the Hawks for training at the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) base Williamtown or the Salt Ash Weapons Range (SAWR); and (b) in particular, did the safety assessment include the safety of exercises where the cases for 30 millimetre cannon shells are ejected; if so, what did each of the tests find.

(2) Have the cannon cases been used in training with Hawks at RAAF Williamtown or the SAWR in the past 12 months.

(3) (a) Have any attempts been made by the department to acquire land near the SAWR in the past 12 months; (b) in particular, has there been any discussion with respect to land acquisition or any other issues with the Hunter Water Corporation; and (c) in broad terms what attempts have been made and their outcomes.

(4) Can a table be provided showing, for each year since 1998, how many decibels are associated with Australian Noise Exposure Forecast (ANEF) 20, 25, 30 and 35 (for example, in 1998 20ANEF translated to 45 decibels, etc.); if the decibel level associated with a particular ANEF has changed at any stage between 1998 and 2003, can the change be noted in the table.

(5) Has the Port Stephens Council been provided with the flight profile maps for the F/A18 Non-Afterburner Assisted Take Off within ANEC-2011; if not, why not.

(6) Has the Port Stephens Council been provided with the flight profile maps for the instrument landing system approach used by the F/A18s at Williamtown or the SAWR; if not, why not.

(7) Can the simplified flight profile maps, as used by the pilots, be provided for all activities undertaken by the Hawks at Williamtown and the SAWR in the past 12 months.

(8) (a) Has the aquifer surrounding the SAWR been tested for aluminium levels; if so: (i) when; and (ii) what were the results of this test; and (b) what are the aluminium levels on average in Australian aquifers.

(9) Has the department or the RAAF ever offered to pay for costs of a family living in Williamtown or near the SAWR to be tested for toluene exposure; if so: (a) when were any such offers made; and (b) has any testing been paid for by the department to date?

(10) Has the department received any letters from doctors expressing concern about the toluene readings of their patients; if so: (a) when; and (b) what was the department’s response.

(11) Is the Minister concerned about toluene exposure to people living near the SAWR as a result of the training of the Hawks; if so, what is the Minister proposing to do about these concerns.

(12) Have there been any changes to the relevant Defence Instruction relating to defence practice areas (DI 59/1) in the past 12 months; and (b) can a copy be provided of the relevant unamended and/or amended instruction.

(13) In relation to the referred Defence Instruction: (a) what changes, in general terms, were made to the instruction and why; and (b) what was the process for changing this instruction, in particular, was ministerial approval given for any of the changes.

(14) If no changes have been made to the referred Defence Instruction, are there any proposed changes to the relevant Defence Instruction relating to defence practice areas; if so: (a) what do the proposed changes relate to; and (b) when is a decision on them expected to be made.

(15) Have laser guided weapons been fitted to aircraft training at or near the SAWR, or are there any proposals to fit such weapons; if so, what are the proposals; and (b) when is a decision expected.

(16) What is the most recent noise exposure forecast information the department has provided to the Port Stephens Council, which is: (a) endorsed as the most accurate available; and (b) appropriate for the purpose of council consideration of development applications.

(17) What is the Government’s position on provision of noise exposure forecasts to local councils or state governments regarding noise related to military use of defence land.

(18) Does the Government supply local councils with final noise exposure forecasts (as opposed to draft ANEFs) when they are completed: (a) automatically; or (b) upon request.

(19) Is the only endorsed ANEF for Williamtown and the SAWR the 2002 ANEF.

(20) Does the 2002 ANEF accurately represent current and proposed future operations at the SAWR.

(21) (a) When did the Minister or the department first notify the Port Stephens Council that the draft 2005 ANEF was inaccurate; and (b) what prompted this notification.

(22) When the department supplied the Port Stephens Council with the draft 2005 ANEF, did it indicate whether: (a) it was accurate or not; and (b) it was endorsed or not.

(23) If the answer to either of the above parts in (22) is no: did the department provide the Port Stephens Council with alternative documents to the draft 2005 ANEF that it considers are more appropriate for planning purposes; if not, why not; if so, when were these alternative documents provided.

(24) Does the Minister consider information sources other than draft noise exposure forecasts to be more appropriate for use by local councils in considering development applications near Defence property; if so, what are these sources (in generic or particular terms).

(25) Does the Minister intend to order that any further studies be made, or information be collected (particularly health information), given that the Supplementary Report to the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) on the introduction of the Hawks at Williamtown and the SAWR states that: ‘During the preparation of the Supplementary Report, Environment Australia identified a number of discrepancies in the draft EIS, and advised that these needed to be clarified to ensure that the concerns raised in public submissions were adequately addressed.  The body of the Supplementary Report indicates, however, that these discrepancies were not addressed’; if not, what does the Minister intend to do about the above statements and others in the draft EIS and final Supplementary Report that indicate some inaccuracies and incomplete evidence about the environmental impacts of the Hawk’s introduction.

1446  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for the Environment and Heritage—In relation to the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area:

(1) Is the Minister planning to change the management structure of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area by abolishing its independent board; if so, what is the time frame for this change.

(2) Is the Minister negotiating with the Queensland Government in relation to new World Heritage legislation; if so, what arrangements for the management of the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area are being proposed in the legislation.

(3) Since the changed World Heritage funding arrangements came into effect, what has been the impact on the Wet Tropics World Heritage Area funding.

1447  Senator Harris: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry—

(1) (a) Can the Minister advise why the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) was set up with such restricted terms of reference; (b) why is it that the OGTR can only look at aspects of the introduction of genetically-modified (GM) material into Australia under the terms of ‘health and environment’.

(2) Why was the Gene Technology Grains Committee (GTGC) put together with a majority of ‘pro-GM’ interests; and (b) why did it ignore submissions that do not agree with its philosophy.

(3) (a) Is the Minister aware that the ‘Canola Industry Stewardship Protocols’ ignore any aspect of possible and very probable on-farm contamination of GM canola into non-GM canola, either through direct grains contamination or, the most likely and by far the greatest source of probable contamination, environmental transfer via pollen, bees, etc.; and (b) what steps has the department taken to scrutinise the possibility of contamination of non-GM canola.

(4) Can the Minister explain how and why the GTGC has been able to place the onus, responsibility and, ultimately, liability on everyone else except the technology providers in its ‘Canola Industry Stewardship Protocols’.

(5) Can a copy of the final report relating to Bayer for Invigor Canola, Crop Management Plan , that was passed by the OGTR, be provided to the Senate and the industry.

(6) Why is it that the New South Wales Farmers’ Association (NSWFA) and the Victorian Farmers Federation (VFF) refuse to survey their own members to gain a grass roots feeling of GM canola.

(7) Can documentation be provided on how many members or executive members of the NSWFA and the VFF were invited or taken on a fact-finding tour to the United States of America by the technology providers.

(8) (a) Is the Minister aware that the New Zealand Agricultural Minister said, in late 2002, that ‘New Zealand was very unlikely to gain a Free Trade Agreement with America because of our stance on GM crops and our stance on nuclear ships’; and (b) what commitments has the Australian Government made to be able to have a free trade agreement with America.

1448  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts—With reference to the $8 million grant to Intellinc under the Intelligent Island Program:

(1) How much of the $8 million Commonwealth funding grant to Intellinc was allocated to the construction of the call centre at Triabunna, Tasmania.

(2) (a) Who brought the proposal to establish a call centre to the board; and (b) what was the basis of the decision made by the board to locate a call centre in Triabunna.

(3) Was a client for the call centre at Triabunna identified before the decision to locate such a facility at Triabunna was made.

(4) What has the record of occupancy at the call centre been since its opening.

(5) What is the ongoing cost of security and maintenance for the call centre, given that it has no clients.

1449  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister for Communications, Information Technology and the Arts—With reference to the Intelligent Island Program:

(1) What performance evaluation has the Commonwealth conducted in relation to the $40 million Commonwealth grant made to Tasmania under the program.

(2) Who has represented the Commonwealth on the board of the program since the resignation of former senator Brian Gibson.

(3) How has the $8 million grant from the program to Intellinc been divested.

(4) Has Intellinc applied for, or received, any further funding under this program or any other Commonwealth funding program; if so, how much.

(5) Has Intellinc generated a profit since its inception.

(6) What is the remuneration to directors of Intellinc.

1450  Senator Brown: To ask the Minister representing the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural and Indigenous Affairs—With reference to the answer to question on notice no. 1139 (Senate Hansard , 24 March 2003, p. 10056):

(1) What is the definition of the word ‘depression’ as used in the answer.

(2) What percentage of detainees have suffered, or are suffering, from depression.

(3) What percentage of detainees are receiving medication for depression.

(4) How many detainees have been diagnosed with depression or a similar condition in the past 5 years.

(5) (a) How many detainees have received medication for such an illness in the past 5 years; and (b) how many of these detainees were: (i) children, (ii) men, and (iii) women.

(6) How many detainees have received other forms of treatment for such an illness in the past 5 years; and (b) how many of these detainees were: (i) children, (ii) men, and (iii) women.