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Statute Law Revision Bill 2008

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2008

 

 

 

THE PARLIAMENT OF THE COMMONWEALTH OF AUSTRALIA

 

 

 

 

THE SENATE

 

 

 

 

 

STATUTE LAW REVISION BILL 2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

EXPLANATORY MEMORANDUM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(Circulated by the authority of the Attorney-General,

 Mr Robert McClelland MP)

 

 



STATUTE LAW REVISION BILL 2008

General Outline

1         The main purpose of this Bill is to correct technical errors that have occurred in Acts as a result of drafting and clerical mistakes.

2         The Bill also repeals a number of Acts that are obsolete and makes consequential amendments to provisions of other Acts that refer to a repealed Act.

3         The Bill also amends a large number of Commonwealth Acts to replace gender-specific language with gender-neutral language. This is being done as a part of an ongoing program aimed at ensuring that the statute book is gender neutral and more inclusive.

4         The corrections and repeals are desirable in order to improve the quality of the text of Commonwealth legislation and, in particular, to facilitate the publication of consolidated versions of Acts by the Attorney-General’s Department and by private publishers of legislation.

5         None of the corrections make any change to the substance of the law.

Financial Impact

6         The Bill will have no financial impact.



Notes on clauses

Clause 1—Short title

7         Clause 1 provides for the Act to be cited as the Statute Law Revision Act 2008 .

Clause 2—Commencement

8         Clause 2 provides for the commencement of the Act.

9         Subclause 2(1) provides that each provision of the Act specified in column 1 of the table set out in the subclause commences, or is taken to have commenced, in accordance with column 2 of the table. Any other statement in column 2 has effect according to its terms.

10     The note at the end of the table explains that the table relates only to the provisions of the Act as originally passed by both Houses of the Parliament and assented to. The table will not be expanded to deal with provisions inserted in the Act after assent.

11     Subclause 2(2) provides that column 3 of the table contains additional information that is not part of the Act. It also clarifies that information in column 3 may be added or edited in any published version of the Act.

12     The items in Schedule 1 to the Bill amend errors contained in principal Acts. The commencement of most items is tied to the commencement of the provision that created the error. This means that the error is taken to have been corrected immediately after it was made. The remaining items commence on the day this Act receives the Royal Assent as the amendments they make relate to errors in numbering, grammatical errors or changes in drafting style.

13     Most of the items in Schedule 2 to the Bill relate to misdescribed or redundant amendments or errors contained in amending Acts. The commencement of those items is tied to the time specified in the amending Act for the commencement of the misdescribed or redundant amendment. The remaining items in Schedule 2 relate to errors in cross references to the Australian Citizenship Act 2007 . Those items are taken to have commenced on the day on which that Act received the Royal Assent.

14     Schedule 3 repeals obsolete Acts and makes consequential amendments to provisions of other Acts that refer to a repealed Act. The Schedule is to commence on the day on which this Act receives the Royal Assent.

15     Schedule 4 amends a number of Acts to replace gender-specific language with gender-neutral language. The Schedule is to commence on the day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

Clause 3—Schedule(s)

16     Clause 3 provides that each Act specified in a Schedule to the Bill is amended or repealed as set out in the applicable items in the Schedule and any other item in a Schedule has effect according to its terms.

Schedule 1—Amendment of principal Acts

17     The items in this Schedule amend errors contained in principal Acts.

Item 1

18     Section 18 of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Protection Act 1984 contains two subsections (2A). This item renumbers the subsection (2A) that was inserted into that section by item 7 of Schedule 3 to the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Heritage Protection Amendment Act 2006 as subsection (2B).

Item 2

19     Subsections 19BA(4) and (5) of the Acts Interpretation Act 1901 refer to section 48 of that Act which was repealed by the Legislative Instruments (Transitional Provisions and Consequential Amendments) Act 2003 . This item repeals those subsections as they are redundant.

Item 3

20     Paragraph 4(3)(u) of the Admiralty Act 198 8 refers to the Arbitration (Foreign Awards and Agreements) Act 1974 . In 1989, the short title of the latter Act was changed to the International Arbitration Act 1974 . This item amends paragraph 4(3)(u) so that it refers to the International Arbitration Act 1974 .

Item 4

21     Subsection 57(1) of the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992 provides that section 52 applies to annual operational plans in the same way as “ they apply ” to corporate plans. This item corrects that grammatical error.

Item 5

22     The note to subsection 130(3) of the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act 2006 states that a “defendant bears and evidential burden” in relation to a certain matter. This item corrects that error.

Items 6 to 9

23     The Parts (other than Part 2) of the Australian Land Transport Development Act 1988 have Roman numbers. Items 6 to 9 amend those Parts so that all the Parts of that Act are given Arabic numbers.

Item 10

24     Paragraph 10(6)(c) of the Australian National University Act 1991 incorrectly refers to a student of the “university”. As the defined term in section 3 of that Act is “University”, this item amends paragraph 10(6)(c) so that it refers to “ U niversity” rather than “ u niversity”.

Item 11

25      Each note to subsections 56(5A), (5B) and (5C) of the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority Act 1998 incorrectly refers to “section 13.3(3)” of the Criminal Code . This item amends each note so that it refers to “ subsection 13.3(3)” rather than “ section 13.3(3)”.

Items 12 to 14

26     Subsection 45(2) and section 47 of the Bills of Exchange Act 1909 apply if the holder of a bill “ do not” do as required by those provisions. Items 12 and 13 correct those grammatical errors.

27     The second sentence of paragraph 54(m) of that Act applies where an agent “ give notice” to his or her principal. Item 14 corrects that grammatical error.

Items 15 and 16

28     Subclause 7(1) of Schedule 2 to the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 contains two paragraphs (q). Item 15 renumbers the paragraph (q) that was inserted into that subclause by item 80 of Schedule 1 to the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Digital Radio) Act 2007 as paragraph (r).

29     Subclause 8(1) of Schedule 2 to the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 contains two paragraphs (j). Item 16 renumbers the paragraph (j) that was inserted into that subclause by item 85 of Schedule 1 to the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Digital Radio) Act 2007 as paragraph (k).

Items 17 and 18

30     The definition of “personal assistance” in subsection 3(1) of the Data-matching Program (Assistance and Tax) Act 1990 contains two paragraphs (db) and two paragraphs (dc). Items 17 and 18 renumber the paragraph (db) and the paragraph (dc) that were inserted into the definition by item 3 of Schedule 6 to the Social Security Legislation Amendment (Parenting and Other Measures) Act 1997 as paragraph (de) and paragraph (df) respectively.

Items 19 and 20

31     Subsections 23(3) and (4) of the Defence Housing Australia Act 1987 refer to “subsection (1) (2), or (2A)”. There should be a comma after “(1)” rather than “(2)”. Items 19 and 20 correct those errors.

Item 21

32     Subsection 195N(1) of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 provides that the Scientific Committee must make an assessment in relation to certain “items”. Subsection 194N(2) of that Act incorrectly refers to an assessment in relation to a “place”. This item amends subsection 194N(2) so that it refers to an “ item ” rather than a “ place ”.

33     The note to this item alters the heading to subsection 194Q(7) of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 by omitting “place” and substituting “item”.

Item 22

34     Subsection 269AA(3) of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 requires the Minister to have regard to a recommendation made by the Scientific Committee “as mentioned in paragraph 189(1A)(c)”. However, it is paragraph 189(1B)(c) that mentions a recommendation made by the Scientific Committee. This item amends subsection 269AA(3) so that it refers to paragraph 189( 1B )(c) rather than paragraph 189( 1A )(c).

Item 23

35     This item amends subsection 404(1) of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 to insert a missing closing bracket after “(1A)”.

Item 24

36     This item amends subsection 430(2) of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 to insert a missing closing bracket after “(2A)”.

Item 25

37     This item amends paragraph 486G(3)(b) of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 to insert a missing full stop after the word “official”.

Item 26

38     Item 825 of Schedule 1 to the Environment and Heritage Legislation Amendment Act (No. 1) 2006 inserted a definition of “Officer of Customs” into section 528 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 . This duplicates a definition that is already contained in the section and this item repeals the unnecessary duplicate definition.

Item 27

39     Paragraph 106ZPB(2)(a) of the Health Insurance Act 1973 incorrectly refers to the “authority”. As the defined term in section 81 of that Act is “Authority”, this item amends paragraph 106ZPB(2)(a) so that it refers to “ A uthority” rather than “ a uthority”.

Items 28 and 29

40     The words “the officer” in the opening text of section 179-10 of the Higher Education Support Act 2003 apply to paragraph (a) of the section but not to paragraphs (b) to (d). These items amend section 179-10 to omit the words “the officer” from the opening text of the section and to insert them at the beginning of paragraph (a).

Items 30 and 31

41     Subsections 77(1) and 79(1) of the Inspector of Transport Security Act 2006 incorrectly refer to orders made under subsection 77(7) of that Act. As the orders are made under subsection 77(6), these items amend subsections 77(1) and 79(1) so that they refer to subsection 77( 6 ) rather than subsection 77( 7 ).

Items 32 and 33

42     These items repeal the definitions of “new ESOS Act” and “old ESOS Act” contained in section 268AA of the Migration Act 1958 as they are redundant.

Item 34

43     Section 123 of the Military Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2004 provides a simplified outline of a Division of the Act that deals with the amount of compensation a former member receives for a week during which “ her or she” is incapacitated for work. This item corrects that error in the text of section 123.

Item 35

44     Paragraph 15(2)(f) of the Navigation Act 1912 contains text referring to paragraph (h) of that subsection which was repealed by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority Act 1990 . This item amends paragraph 15(2)(f) to remove the text that refers to repealed paragraph (h).

45     Note 2 to the item relates to section 190AB of the Navigation Act 1912 which does not have a section heading. The note inserts “Publication of information about ships” as a section heading for the section.

Item 36

46     Paragraph 267J(b) of the Navigation Act 1912 incorrectly refers to a contravention of subsection 267G(1) of that Act by a ship master. As subsection 267G(2), not subsection 267G(1), imposes requirements on ship masters, this item amends paragraph 267J(b) so that it refers to subsection 267G( 2 ) rather than subsection 267G( 1 ).

Item 37

47     Sections 20 and 21 of Part IV of the Protection of the Sea (Civil Liability) Act 1981 refer to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority rather than the Minister. The heading to Part IV of that Act incorrectly refers to the Minister. This item replaces the heading to Part IV so that it refers to the Authority rather than the Minister .

Items 38 to 40

48     These items amend provisions of the Removal of Prisoners (Territories) Act 1923 to add missing conjunctions at the end of a number of paragraphs.

Items 41 to 45

49     Subsections 127(2), 129(2), 130(2), 131(2) and 132(2) of the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000 refer to “13.3(3)” of the Criminal Code . The word “subsection” is missing from each reference and items 41, 43 and 45 insert that missing word into those subsections.

50     Sections 131 and 132 of the Renewable Energy (Electricity) Act 2000 consist of two subsections however, the first subsection in each section is not numbered. Items 42 and 44 insert “(1)” at the beginning of each of those unnumbered subsections.

Item 46

51     Subsection 127(2) of the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999 contains one paragraph. This item repeals and substitutes subsection 127(2) so that it no longer contains a single paragraph.

Item 47

52     Subsection 54AA(1) of the Therapeutic Goods Act 1989 contains the text “specified in whichever of n or (3) applies”. This item removes that text as it is incorrect and redundant.

Items 48 to 58

53     These items amend provisions of the Transfer of Prisoners Act 1983 to add missing conjunctions at the end of a number of paragraphs and a subparagraph.

Item 59

54     This item repeals the definition of “consumptive pool” contained in subsection 4(1) of the Water Act 2007 as it is redundant.

Item 60

55     The word “the” is missing from the phrase “it is intention of the Parliament” in subsection 11(3) of the Water Act 2007 . This item inserts the missing word into the subsection.

Item 61

56     Subsections 63(3) and (4) of the Water Act 2007 incorrectly refer to a “proposed water plan”. The defined term in section 4 of that Act is “water resource plan”. This item amends subsections 63(3) and (4) so that they correctly refer to a “proposed water resource plan”.

Item 62

57     Subsection 69(1) of the Water Act 2007 refers to a water resource plan given under paragraph 68(2)(b). Water resource plans are given under paragraph 68(6)(b) not paragraph 68(2)(b) of that Act. This item amends subsection 69(1) so that it refers to paragraph 68( 6 )(b) rather than paragraph 68( 2 )(b).

Item 63

58     The word “for” is missing from the phrase “the Commonwealth is responsible those changes” in subsection 86(1) of the Water Act 2007 . This item inserts the missing word into the subsection.

Item 64

59     Subsection 92(10) of the Water Act 2007 refers to provisions specified under subsection 92(7) of that Act. Provisions are specified under subsection 92(9) not subsection 92(7). This item amends subsection 92(10) so that it refers to subsection 92( 9 ) rather than subsection 92( 7 ).

Item 65

60     Subsection 93(5) of the Water Act 2007 requires regulations to provide for certain matters. Subsection 93(6) sets out some additional requirements for the regulations but these are not to limit “subsection (4)”. As subsection 93(4) does not deal with the regulations, this item amends subsection 93(6) so that it refers to subsection 93( 5 ) rather than subsection 93( 4 ).

Item 66

61     Subparagraph 156(1)(a)(i) of the Water Act 2007 refers to a civil penalty provision set out in Part 3 of that Act. This items amends the subparagraph to omit the reference to Part 3 as there are no civil penalty provisions set out in that Part.

Item 67

62     This item inserts a reference to the “water market rules” into subparagraph 169(1)(a)(i) of the Water Act 2007 to ensure that it is consistent with subparagraph 169(1)(a)(iii) and paragraph 169(1)(b) of that Act.

Item 68

63     This item inserts a reference to the “water market rules” into paragraph 170(5)(a) of the Water Act 2007 to ensure that it is consistent with paragraph 170(5)(c) of that Act.

Item 69

64     Paragraph 244(1)(b) of the Water Act 2007 incorrectly refers to an “interim water plan”. The defined term in section 4 of that Act is “interim water resource plan”. This item amends paragraph 244(1)(b) so that it correctly refers to an “interim water resource plan”.

Schedule 2—Amendment of amending Acts

65     Most of the items in this Schedule relate to misdescribed or redundant amendments or errors contained in amending Acts. The remaining items relate to errors in cross references to the Australian Citizenship Act 2007 .

Item 1

66     Item 148 of Schedule 1 to the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Digital Radio) Act 2007 misdescribes text in paragraph 31(1)(a) of the Radiocommunications Act 1992 that was to be omitted and substituted by the item. Item 1 of this Schedule corrects that misdescription of text.

Item 2

67     Item 26 of Schedule 2A to the Broadcasting Legislation Amendment (Digital Television) Act 2006 misdescribes text in subclauses 54(2) and (3) of Schedule 6 to the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 that was to be omitted by the item. Item 2 of this Schedule corrects that misdescription of text.

Items 3 and 4

68     Items 108 and 112 of Schedule 1 to the Corporations Legislation Amendment (Simpler Regulatory System) Act 2007 misdescribes text in paragraphs 942B(2)(g) and 942C(2)(h) of the Corporations Act 2001 , after which each item purported to insert additional text. Items 3 and 4 of this Schedule correct those misdescriptions of text.

Item 5

69     Item 235 of Schedule 1 to the Defence Legislation Amendment Act 2006 misdescribes text in section 36 of the Defence Force Discipline Appeals Act 1955 that was to be omitted by the item. Item 5 of this Schedule corrects that misdescription of text.

Items 6 to 9

70      Table items 11, 13, 15 and 17 of the commencement table in subsection 2(1) of the Electoral and Referendum Amendment (Electoral Integrity and Other Measures) Act 2006 refer to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”. At the time the former Act was enacted, the Australian Citizenship Bill 2005 was still before the Parliament. The Australian Citizenship Act 2007 was not enacted until 2007. Items 6 to 9 of this Schedule amend those table items so that they refer to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2007 ” rather than the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”.

Items 10 to 13

71     Items 37, 92, 115 and 133 of Schedule 1 to the Electoral and Referendum Amendment (Electoral Integrity and Other Measures) Act 2006 are to omit and substitute text that refers to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”. At the time the former Act was enacted, the Australian Citizenship Bill 2005 was still before the Parliament. The Australian Citizenship Act 2007 was not enacted until 2007. Items 10 to 13 of this Schedule amend items 37, 92, 115 and 133 so that the text that they substitute refers to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2007 ” rather than the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”.

Item 14

72     The note to item 453 of Schedule 1 to the Environment and Heritage Legislation Amendment Act (No. 1) 200 6 incorrectly refers to the heading to section 254 of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 . Item 14 of this Schedule amends the note so that it correctly refers to section  254B .

Item 15

73     Subitem 18(2) of Schedule 2 to the Environment and Heritage Legislation Amendment Act (No. 1) 2006 provides that material “must be give to” the Minister. Item 15 of this Schedule corrects that grammatical error.

Item 16

74     Item 8 of the commencement table in subsection 2(1) of the Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Legislation Amendment (Child Support Reform Consolidation and Other Measures) Act 2007 (“the 2007 Act”) refers to the commencement of Schedule 2 to the Child Support Legislation Amendment (Reform of the Child Support Scheme—New Formula and Other Measures) Act 2006 (“the 2006 Act”). Under subsection 2(1) of the 2006 Act, different items of Schedule 2 to that Act commence on different days. Item 16 of this Schedule amends table item 8 of the commencement table in subsection 2(1) of the 2007 Act to clarify that item 212 of Schedule 1 to that Act commences immediately before the commencement of item 104 of Schedule 2 to the 2006 Act.

Item 17

75     Item 10 of Schedule 1 to the Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Legislation Amendment (Child Support Reform Consolidation and Other Measures) Act 2007 is redundant because the amendment that it purports to make has already been made by item 38 of Schedule 8 to the Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006 , as amended by item 8 of Schedule 2 to the Statute Law Revision Act 2007 . Item 17 of this Schedule repeals the redundant item.

Item 18

76      Item 11 of Schedule 1 to the Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Legislation Amendment (Child Support Reform Consolidation and Other Measures) Act 2007 purports to amend subsections 117(3A) and (3B) of the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 but the item misdescribes the text it purports to omit from subsection 117(3B). Subsection 117(3B) was correctly amended by item 39 of Schedule 8 to the Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006 , as amended by item 8 of Schedule 2 to the Statute Law Revision Act 2007 . Item 18 of this Schedule repeals and substitutes the heading to item 11 of Schedule 1 to clarify that it only relates to subsection 117(3A).

Item 19

77     Table item 8 of the commencement table in subsection 2(1) of the Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006 refers to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”. At the time the former Act was enacted, the Australian Citizenship Bill 2005 was still before the Parliament. The Australian Citizenship Act 2007 was not enacted until 2007. Item 19 of this Schedule amends that table item so that it refers to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2007 ” rather than the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”.

Item 20

78     The heading before item 2 of Schedule 8 to the Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006 refers to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”. At the time the former Act was enacted, the Australian Citizenship Bill 2005 was still before the Parliament. The Australian Citizenship Act 2007 was not enacted until 2007. Item 20 of this Schedule amends the heading before item 2 of Schedule 8 so that it refers to the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2007 ” rather than the “ Australian Citizenship Act 2006 ”.

Item 21

79     The heading of item 16 of Schedule 2 to the Fisheries Legislation Amendment Act 2007 incorrectly refers to Division 3 of Part 6 of the Fisheries Management Act 1991 . Item 21 of this Schedule amends the item heading so that it correctly refers to Division 6 of Part 6 of the latter Act.

Item 22

80     The heading of item 260 of Schedule 3 to the Fisheries Legislation Amendment Act 2007 incorrectly refers to Division 6 of Part VI of the Torres Strait Fisheries Act 1984 . Item 22 of this Schedule amends the item heading so that it correctly refers to Division 3 of Part VI of the latter Act.

Item 23

81      Items 55 and 56 of Schedule 1 to the OHS and SRC Legislation Amendment Act 2006 misdescribe text in sections 544B and 631C of the Social Security Act 1991 that was to be omitted by each of those items. Item 23 of this Schedule corrects those misdescriptions of text.

Item 24

82     Item 18 of Schedule 1 to the Postal Industry Ombudsman Act 2006 misdescribes text in subsection 50(2) of the Privacy Act 1988 that was to be omitted and substituted by the item. Item 24 of this Schedule corrects that misdescription of text.

Item 25

83     The provisions in the Social Security Act 1991 that were to be amended by items 51, 74, 78 and 79 of Schedule 3 to the Social Security and Family Assistance Legislation Amendment (Miscellaneous Measures) Act 2006 were previously amended by the Tax Laws Amendment (Repeal of Inoperative Provisions) Act 2006 . The amendments made by the latter Act were intended to supersede the amendments that were to be made by the former Act. Item 25 of this Schedule repeals items 51, 74, 78 and 79 as they are redundant.

Item 26

84     Item 8 of Schedule 2 to the Statute Law Review Act 2007 repeals and substitutes items 38 and 39 of the Schedule 8 to the Family Law Amendment (Shared Parental Responsibility) Act 2006 . The substituted item 39 purports to amend subsections 117(3A) and (3B) of the Child Support (Assessment) Act 1989 but the item misdescribes the text it purports to omit from subsection 117(3A). Subsection 117(3A) was correctly amended by item 11 of Schedule 1 to the Families, Community Services and Indigenous Affairs Legislation Amendment (Child Support Reform Consolidation and Other Measures) Act 2007 . Item 26 of this Schedule repeals and substitutes the heading to item 39 of Schedule 8, as amended by item 8 of Schedule 2 to the Statute Law Revision Act 2007 , to clarify that item 39 only relates to subsection 117(3B).

Items 27 and 28

85      Item 7 of Schedule 4 to the Workplace Relations Legislation Amendment (Independent Contractors) Act 2006 misdescribes text in subsection 718(2) of the Workplace Relations Act 1996 that was to be omitted and substituted by the item. Items 27 and 28 of this Schedule correct those misdescriptions of text.

Schedule 3—Repeal of obsolete Acts

86     The items in this Schedule repeal obsolete Acts and make consequential amendments to provisions of other Acts that refer to the repealed Acts.

Part 1

87     The items in this Part repeal obsolete Acts administered by the Minister for Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

Item 1

88     This item repeals the Brigalow Lands Agreement Act 1962 which related to an agreement between the Commonwealth and Queensland with respect to the Development of Brigalow Lands in the Fitzroy River Basin. Section 4 of that Act provides for the payment of financial assistance by the Commonwealth to Queensland. Under the agreement, the financial assistance was repayable with interest in 40 half-yearly payments beginning on 15 January 1968. As Queensland has made the required repayments, the Act is obsolete.

Item 2

89      This item repeals the Foreign Fishing Boats Levy Act 1981 which imposes a levy on the grant of a licence under subsection 9(2) or (3) of the Fisheries Act 1952 or a licence under subsection 13(2) of the Continental Shelf (Living Natural Resources) Act 1968 . Those provisions of the Fisheries Act 1952 and the whole of the Continental Shelf (Living Natural Resources) Act 1968 were repealed by the Fisheries Legislation (Consequential Provisions) Act 1991 . Accordingly, the Foreign Fishing Boats Levy Act 1981 is obsolete.

Item 3

90     This item repeals the New South Wales Flood Relief Act 1974 which allows the Treasurer, at any time before 1 July 1976, to authorise the payment of financial assistance to New South Wales for the purpose of alleviating the effects of certain floods in the State. Under section 6 of that Act, the payments are subject to such conditions, if any, as the Treasurer determines including a condition as to the repayment of the financial assistance. As no new payments can be authorised under the Act and as New South Wales has made any required repayments, the Act is obsolete.

Item 4

91     This item repeals the New South Wales Grant (Leeton Co-operative Cannery Limited) Act 1971 which provides for the grant of financial assistance to New South Wales to enable the State to make a loan to Leeton Co-operative Cannery Limited. Under section 5 of that Act, the payment of financial assistance was subject to such conditions, if any, as the Minister determines including a condition as to the repayment of the financial assistance. As no new payments can be made under the Act and as New South Wales has made any required repayments, the Act is obsolete.

Item 5

92     This item repeals the Northern Prawn Fishery Voluntary Adjustment Scheme Loan Guarantee Act 1985 which relates to the guarantee of the repayment of money borrowed for the purposes of the Northern Prawn Fishery Voluntary Adjustment Scheme. As the Scheme is no longer in operation, the Act is obsolete.

Item 6

93     This item repeals the Queensland Flood Relief Act 1974 which allows the Treasurer, at any time before 1 July 1976, to authorise the payment of financial assistance to Queensland for the purpose of alleviating the effects of certain floods in the State. Under section 6 of that Act, the payments are subject to such conditions, if any, as the Treasurer determines including a condition as to the repayment of the financial assistance. As no new payments can be authorised under the Act and as Queensland has made any required repayments, the Act is obsolete.

Item 7

94     This item repeals the Queensland Grant (Proserpine Flood Mitigation) Act 1976 which allows for the grant of financial assistance to Queensland for flood mitigation works carried out between 1 July 1975 and 31 December 1979. Under section 11 of that Act, the payment of financial assistance is subject to the condition that Queensland will repay to the Commonwealth any over-payments under the Act. As no new payments can be made under the Act and as Queensland has repaid any over-payments under the Act, the Act is obsolete.

Item 8

95     This item repeals the Queensland Tobacco Leaf Marketing Board Guarantee Act 1953 which authorises the Commonwealth to guarantee the repayment of certain loans made by the Commonwealth Bank of Australia to the Queensland Tobacco Leaf Marketing Board. As this arrangement ceased in 1994 and as the Board has been abolished, the Act is obsolete.

Items 9 to 12

96     These items repeal the following Acts which relate to agreements between the Commonwealth and the States in connection with Softwood Forestry:

(a)                   Softwood Forestry Agreements Act 1967 ;

(b)                Softwood Forestry Agreements Act 1972 ;

(c)                 Softwood Forestry Agreements Act 1976 ;

(d)                Softwood Forestry Agreements Act 1978 .

The agreements set out in those Acts provide for the payment of financial assistance to a State during particular periods in the past and the repayment of that financial assistance with interest by instalments over a period of a number of years. As no new payments can be made under the agreements and as the required repayments have been made by the States, the Acts are obsolete.

Items 13 and 14

97     These items repeal the States Grants (Rural Reconstruction) Act 1971 and the States Grants (Rural Reconstruction) Act 1973 which relate to an agreement between the Commonwealth and one or more of the States in respect of a scheme to provide assistance to persons engaged in rural industries. The agreement set out in the former Act provides for the repayment of that assistance with interest by instalments over a period of a number of years. As the scheme has been replaced by the Rural Adjustment Scheme under the Rural Adjustment Act 1992 and as the required repayments have been made by the States, the Acts are obsolete.

Items 15 and 16

98     These items repeal the Tasmanian Native Forestry Agreement Act 1979 and the Tasmanian Native Forestry Agreement Act 1980 which relate to an agreement between the Commonwealth and Tasmania in connection with Tasmanian native forestry. The agreement set out in the former Act provides for the payment of financial assistance to Tasmania in relation to expenditure on projects during particular periods in the past and the repayment of that financial assistance with interest by instalments over a period of a number of years. As no new payments can be made under the agreement and as the required repayments have been made by Tasmania, the Acts are obsolete.

Item 17

99     This item repeals the Western Australia Grant (Northern Development) Act 1958 which provides for the grant of financial assistance to Western Australia in relation to the development of the northern part of the State. Under section 5 of that Act, the Treasurer may determine that an amount of financial assistance is payable to Western Australia in relation to an approved project to be carried out during the 5-year period beginning on 1 July 1958. As no new grants of financial assistance can be made under the Act, the Act is obsolete.

Item 18

100     This item repeals the Western Australia (Northern Development) Agreement Act 1963 which relates to an agreement between the Commonwealth and Western Australia in relation to the development of the northern part of the State. The agreement set out in the Act provides for the payment of financial assistance to Western Australia in relation to expenditure on works during the 3-year period beginning on 1 July 1963. The agreement also requires Western Australia to repay half of the financial assistance in 30 equal half-yearly payments beginning on 15 December 1966. As no new payments can be made under the agreement and as the required repayments have been made by Western Australia, the Act is obsolete.

Part 2

101     Item 19 of this Part repeals the Alcohol Education and Rehabilitation Account Act 2001 , which is administered by the Minister for Health and Ageing. Subsection 5(1) of that Act established the Alcohol Education and Rehabilitation Account and, under subsection 8(1), amounts standing to the credit of the Account must be paid out under one or more funding agreements before 1 July 2005. As all amounts standing to the credit of the Account have been paid out and as the funding agreement has expired, the Act is obsolete.

Part 3

102     The items in this Part repeal obsolete Acts administered by the Minister for Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Local Government.

Item 20

103     This item repeals the Air Navigation (Charges) Act 1952 which relates to charges in respect of Commonwealth air navigation facilities and services. As the Commonwealth no longer maintains, operates or provides aerodromes and as there are no charges or penalties owing under the Act, the Act is obsolete.

Item 21

104     This item repeals the National Railway Network (Financial Assistance) Act 1979 which provides for the grant of financial assistance to certain States in relation to main railway lines. Under section 5 of that Act, it is a condition of the grant that the financial assistance be repaid with interest. As the grants were repaid by the States between 1984 and 1998, the Act is obsolete.

Item 22

105     This item repeals the Tasmania Agreement (Launceston Precision Tool Annexe) Act 1980 which relates to an agreement between the Commonwealth and Tasmania in connection with the Launceston Precision Tool Annexe. The agreement set out in the Schedule to the Act provides for the payment of financial assistance to Tasmania in connection with the purchase and installation of equipment for the Annexe on or after 1 May 1979. The agreement also requires Tasmania to repay that financial assistance in 20 consecutive half-yearly payments beginning on 15 January 1981. As no new payments can be made under the agreement and as the required repayments have been made, the Act is obsolete.

Part 4

106     Item 23 of this Part repeals the Education Research Act 1970 , which is administered by the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research. The Act provides for payments to be made in respect of research projects and courses of training. As no such payments have been made under the Act since 1983, the Act is obsolete.

Part 5

107     Item 24 of this Part repeals the Resource Assessment Commission Act 1989 , which is administered by the Prime Minister. The Act establishes a Resource Assessment Commission but the Commission has not been required to conduct an inquiry into a resource matter since 1994, and the office of the Chairperson has also been vacant since 1994. Accordingly, the Act is obsolete.

Part 6

108     The items in this Part amend Acts to remove references to Acts repealed by other Parts of this Schedule.

Item 25

109     This item repeals item 42 of the table in Schedule 1 to the Age Discrimination Act 2004 as it refers to the Resource Assessment Commission Act 1989 . This is consequential to the repeal of the later Act by item 24 of this Schedule.

Item 26

110     This item repeals paragraph 253B(b) of the Bankruptcy Act 1966 as it refers to the  States Grants (Rural Reconstruction) Act 1971 . This is consequential to the repeal of the later Act by item 13 of this Schedule.

Item 27

111     This item omits a reference to the Air Navigation (Charges) Act 1952 from the Schedule to the Sea Installations Act 1987 . This is consequential to the repeal of the former Act by item 20 of this Schedule.

Schedule 4—Removing gender-specific language

112     It has been Commonwealth drafting practice since the early 1980s for statutory provisions to be drafted so as to avoid the use of gender-specific language. In particular, a masculine pronoun must always be accompanied by a feminine pronoun except in the case of legislation intended to apply to people of one sex but not the other (for example, maternity leave legislation).

113     While paragraph 23(a) of the Acts Interpretation Act 1901 provides that words importing a gender include every other gender, existing statutory provisions that use gender-specific language have been progressively amended so as to replace such language with gender-neutral language. The use of gender-neutral language in Acts makes them more inclusive.

114     Schedule 4 amends a large number of Commonwealth Acts to replace gender-specific language with gender-neutral language. This is being done as a part of an ongoing program aimed at ensuring that the statute book is gender neutral and more inclusive.

115     Some amendments in the Schedule specify that a whole Act, or a large group of provisions in an Act, is to be amended so that every occurrence of a masculine pronoun is followed by a feminine pronoun. However, it is not intended that the Bill amend any provisions in an Act where a masculine pronoun is already followed by a feminine pronoun.