House debates

Thursday, 16 February 2012


Financial Framework Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 1) 2012; Second Reading

9:21 am

Photo of David BradburyDavid Bradbury (Lindsay, Australian Labor Party, Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer) Share this | | Hansard source

I move:

That this bill be now read a second time.

The Financial Framework Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 1) 2012 would, if enacted, amend four acts and repeal two acts across three portfolios. This will help to clarify aspects of the Commonwealth’s financial framework.

It is the ninth financial framework legislation amendment bill since 2004. It forms part of an ongoing program to address financial framework issues as they are identified, taking a collaborative and whole-of-government approach.

The breadth of appropriation, governance and financial management issues across the government compels continued attention. For this reason, the Department of Finance and Deregulation works with all parts of government, in a strong culture of collaboration, to promptly address financial framework issues in legislation once issues emerge and solutions are designed.

Specifically, this bill would amend four acts, as follows.

First, the bill would amend the Auditor-General Act 1997 to clarify that the Auditor-General may accept an appointment under the Corporations Act 2001 as the auditor of any company that the Commonwealth controls. This will align the Auditor-General Act 1997 with amendments made to expand the meaning of Commonwealth control, which were made in 2008 to the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997.

Second, the bill would amend the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997 itself to:

      Third, the bill would amend two minor misdescribed provisions that appear in the Financial Framework Legislation Amendment Act 2010, which sought to update the Commonwealth Authorities and Companies Act 1997 (to replace references to 'common law and in equity', and 'common law or in equity', with the phrase 'under the general law').

      And fourth, the bill would amend the Financial Management and Accountability Act 1997 to make the following four key changes:

            last, to increase certain limits around which the finance minister may delegate to officials, in relation to the making of certain legislative instruments.

                  This bill is, accordingly, another step to help ensure that specific areas of the Commonwealth’s financial framework remain effective and up to date.

                  I commend the bill to the House.

                  Debate adjourned.