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Select Committee Business 2 June to 9 June 2000

SELECT COMMITTEE BUSINESS
2 June 2000 to 9 June 2000
Committee meetings
There were five committee meetings in New Zealand, four of which were in Auckland. One committee (Social Services) has been meeting with counterparts in Australia this week.

Reports presented
Finance and Expenditure
 Briefing from the Controller and Auditor-General on the Third Report for 1999 and the First Report for 2000

Local Government and Environment
 Petition 1996/757 of Bruce Hucker and 18 597 others

Bills referred to select committees
No bills were referred.

Committee notes
(for further information on an item, please contact the committee staff noted in italics)

Commerce (Alan Witcombe, Matthew Andrews)
The committee will continue considering bills next week.

Education and Science (Clare Sullivan, Malcolm McNamara)
The committee will continue work on the Education Amendment Bill next week

Employment and Accident Insurance (Marie Alexander)
The committee started working through the issues in the Employment Relations Bill this week

Finance and Expenditure (Graham Hill, Julian Kersey)
At its next meeting on 14 June the committee will continue to hear evidence on the Taxation (FBT, SSCWT and Remedial Matters) Bill. The committee will also meet briefly late in the afternoon of 15 June to allocate the votes from the 2000/2001 Estimates of Appropriations to subject select committees for consideration and report back to the House by 14 August.

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (David Sanders, Andrew Fieldsend)
Next week the committee will hear evidence from the Speaker on his recent visit to the Philippines, Vietnam, Cambodia and Thailand.

Government Administration (Louise Sparrer, Lesley Ferguson)
The committee is continuing its consideration of the Gaming Law Reform Bill next week. The committee will also be considering the 2000/2001 Estimates on a preliminary basis.

Health (Nick Aldous, Marcus Ganley)
The committee met at the Barrycourt Hotel in Auckland on Wednesday, 7 June from 10.00 am to 5.30 pm. In the morning the committee heard submissions on the Alcohol Advisory Council Amendment Bill. In the afternoon the committee turned to the Intellectual Disability (Compulsory Care) Bill and the Criminal Justice Amendment Bill (No 7). Submitters on these bills included the Human Rights Commission and the Health and Disability Commissioner.

Next week the committee will meet in Wellington and will hear evidence from the Ministry of Health on the Child Mortality Review Board Bill.

Justice and Electoral (Tracey Conlon, Andrew Fieldsend, Fiona McLean)
The committee has set a closing date of Friday, 7 July for submissions on Supplementary Order Paper (SOP) No 25. This SOP aims to amend the Matrimonial Property Amendment Bill in several ways. The main effect of the SOP is to extend the law covering matrimonial property to couples who are living in de facto relationships, including same-sex relationships. It does not legalise marriage for same-sex couples. Further information on the SOP is available from the committee secretariat and on our web site under “press releases”. The committee must make its report to the House by 4 September.

The Justice and Electoral Subcommittee met in Auckland on Wednesday, 7 June to hear further evidence on its inquiry into matters relating to the State visit of the President of China to New Zealand in 1999. Submissions were heard from Free Tibet protestors and from Superintendent Beckett of the New Zealand Police. The subcommittee has already heard evidence in Christchurch and in Wellington on the inquiry.

The subcommittee will next meet on Thursday, 15 June to hear evidence from the New Zealand Council for Civil Liberties. The hearing of evidence will be open to the public from 3.30 pm and will be held in Parliament House, in Room G.006.

Local Government and Environment (David Bagnall, Malcolm McNamara)
The committee met twice in Auckland this week to hear evidence on the Resource Management Amendment Bill and for a site visit to the Auckland Regional Council.

MMP Review (Louise Sparrer)
The terms of reference for the MMP Review Committee are to consider:

(a) the effect of sections 35 and 36 of the Electoral Act 1993 (relating to the division of New Zealand into general electorates) on the operation of the electoral system,
(b) the provisions of the Electoral Act 1993 dealing with Mori representation,
(c) whether there should be a further referendum on changes to the electoral system,
(d) the appropriate number of members of Parliament, taking into account the results of the 1999 citizens initiated referendum on that issue,
(e) the extent to which party lists have resulted in better representation of women,
(f) the effectiveness of the current electoral system with respect to the representation of the tangata whenua and ethnic minorities, and
(g) any other matter relating to the electoral system.

The committee must report finally before 1 June 2002 and include in its report a statement indicating:

(a) whether, in its view, there should be changes to sections 35 and 36 of the Electoral Act 1993,
(b) whether, in its view, there should be changes to the provisions of the Electoral Act 1993 dealing with Mori representation,
(c) whether, in its view, there should be a further referendum on changes to the electoral system, and if so, the nature of the proposals to be put to voters and the timing of such a referendum,
(d) what, in its view, is the appropriate number of members of Parliament,
(e) what changes, if any, might be made to the electoral system to further enhance the representation of women,
(f) what changes, if any, might be made to the electoral system with respect to the representation of tangata whenua and ethnic minorities, and
(g) what other changes, if any, should be made to the electoral system.

The membership of the committee is as follows: Rt Hon Jonathan Hunt (Chairperson), Hon Peter Dunne, (Deputy Chairperson), Georgina Beyer, Chris Carter, Rod Donald, Stephen Franks, Grant Gillon, Hon Tony Ryall, and Rt Hon Jenny Shipley.

The committee is calling for submissions on the review as set out below.

Mori Affairs (Kia Paranihi, Denise Te Karu)
The committee will continue working on the Maori Purposes Bill next week.

Primary Production (Bob Bunch, April Bennett)
Next week the committee will hear evidence from the Controller and Auditor-General on his report Oversight of Information Technology.

Social Services (Tim Cooper, Louise Gardiner)
The committee has been meeting in Canberra and Melbourne this week as part of the annual exchange of committees between New Zealand and Australia. The focus of the visit has been Trans Tasman welfare delivery and reciprocity.

Transport and Industrial Relations (Lyn Main, Karen Smyth)
At the meeting on Wednesday 14 June, the committee will hear evidence from Anna Andrews, who has petitioned for an inquiry into the co-ordination of emergency services involved in the rescue of survivors of Southern Air Flight 168 in August 1998.

Other business before the committee next week includes further consideration of the 1998/99 financial review of Airways Corporation of New Zealand, and the Airport Authorities Amendment Bill. This bill is due to be reported back in August.


Closing dates for submissions
Committees are receiving submissions on the following items with the closing date shown. Twenty copies of submissions are required.

Commerce
Economic Development (Industry New Zealand and Ministry of Economic Development) Bill (16 June 2000)
Chartered Professional Engineers of New Zealand Bill (7 July 2000)

Education and Science
Inquiry into student fees, loans, allowances and the overall resourcing of tertiary education (24 July 2000)
Education (Limiting Number of Universities) Amendment Bill (30 June 2000)

Finance and Expenditure
Taxation (Annual Rates, GST and Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill (5 July 2000)
Taxpayers’ Charter Bill (31 July 2000)

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade
Inquiry into New Zealand’s economic and trade relationship with Australia (16 June 2000)
Justice and Electoral
Supplementary Order Paper No 25 relating to the Matrimonial Property Amendment Bill (7 July 2000)

Local Government and Environment
Forests (West Coast Accord) Bill (19 June 2000)

MMP Review
Review of MMP and other aspects of the electoral system (31 July 2000)

Primary Production
Inquiry into organic agriculture in New Zealand (3 July 2000)

Social Services
Housing Restructuring (Income-Related Rents) Bill (26 June 2000)


General
Committee activity over the next two months can be expected to focus on the Estimates of expenditure that form part of the Budget, due to be delivered on 15 June. Committees consider the Estimates that fall into their subject area. They often do this by hearing evidence from the Minister and from departmental officials. The Audit Office provides advice to committees at the beginning of the process. Committees prepare either narrative or pro forma reports on their examinations of the Estimates. These will be compiled into a compendium available for purchase after all the reports have been presented.

You can find further information about select committees on our website at www.clerk.parliament.govt.nz. If you require additional information or have any feedback on the contents, please contact:

Carol Rankin
Senior Parliamentary Officer
ph: 471 9534, fax: 499 0486, or at carol.rankin@parliament.govt.nz

Compiled in the Select Committee Office, Office of the Clerk, 2 June 2000

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