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Select Committee Business 11 May To 18 May 2001

Select Committee Business
From 11 May To 18 May 2001
Committee meetings
There were 19 committee meetings. One committee and two subcommittees met outside Wellington. The remainder met in the parliamentary complex.

Reports presented
Transport and Industrial Relations
 1999/2000 financial review of the Civil Aviation Authority of New Zealand

Education and Science
 1999/2000 financial review of the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology

Law and Order
 Degrees of Murder Bill (157-1)

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)

Education and Science (Louise Gardiner, SC-ES@parliament.govt.nz)
The committee’s regular Thursday meeting was augmented this week by four subcommittee meetings, including two meetings held simultaneously, 750 km apart, in Christchurch and Auckland.

On Tuesday 15 May, the committee presented its report on the 1999/2000 financial review of the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology (FRST). In this, the committee discusses FRST’s role in promoting Māori science, and recommends the creation of a public discussion document on the role and position of Māoridom in New Zealand’s research, science and technology infrastructure, and the establishment of clear lines of accountability and evaluation for all of its expenditure on Māori science. The report also discusses the Foundation’s re-configured funding role, negotiating portfolios of research to achieve social, environmental and economic benefits; the development of policy guidelines on intellectual property issues; and the Foundation’s role in stimulating and increasing innovation.

On Thursday, 17 May the committee heard submissions on Supplementary Order Paper 133 relating to the Education Amendment Bill (No 2), which contains the Government’s proposed amendments to the bill. Submissions were heard from Mangawhero Te Kohanga Reo, Te Ao Marama Kohanga Reo, and Te Kohanga Reo National Trust Board. Two subcommittees were appointed to hear further submissions on the bill and Supplementary Order Paper in both Auckland and Christchurch on Friday 18 May.

Finance and Expenditure (Julian Kersey, SC-FE@parliament.govt.nz)
The committee met on Wednesday, 16 May and heard evidence from the Governor of the Reserve Bank on the Monetary Policy Statement. The committee continued to hear submissions on the New Zealand Stock Exchange Restructuring Bill. The bill is a private bill that provides a mechanism for the conversion of the New Zealand Stock Exchange into a company if its members so choose.

The chairperson issued a media statement on behalf of the committee on Thursday, 17 May in relation to the committee’s consideration of the Taxation (Annual Rates, Taxpayer Assessment and Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill. The committee is expecting to receive proposed amendments to the bill from the Minister of Revenue on the GST treatment of non-residents and the transfer of overpaid tax. The committee will call for submissions on these amendments when received from the Minister.

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (David Sanders, SC-FD@parliament.govt.nz)
The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee heard further evidence on the New Zealand Nuclear Free Zone Extension Bill at its meeting yesterday. Two additional submissions on this bill will be heard at the committee's next meeting on the 24 May. Evidence will also be heard in relation to the committee's ongoing inquiry into New Zealand's economic and trade relationship with Australia. The committee is visiting Australia from 4 to 8 June.

Government Administration (Lesley Ferguson, SC-GA@parliament.govt.nz)
Next week the committee intends to continue consideration of the Civil Defence Emergency Management Bill, the Statues Amendment Bill and the Cigarettes (Fire Safety) Bill.

Health (Matthew Andrews, SC-Health@parliament.govt.nz)
The committee met on Wednesday, 16 May, and continued to hear submissions relating to the Medical Practitioners (Foreign Qualified Medical Practitioners) Amendment Bill. Submissions were heard from three overseas doctors, who described their experience and frustration in attempting to gain registration in this country. These three doctors support the bill. The committee also heard from three medical bodies, who expressed concern about the proposed change in the process of registering overseas doctors. Their concerns focused around the issue of ensuring that overseas doctors who are registered are safe to practice in this country.

The committee will conclude its hearings on the bill next Wednesday, when it will hear from the New Zealand Medical Students Association and further evidence from the New Zealand Medical Council.

Justice and Electoral (Wendy Proffitt, SC-JE@parliament.govt.nz)
This week the committee travelled to Auckland to hear submissions on the Electoral Amendment Bill (No 2), the Victims’ Rights Bill and Supplementary Order Paper (SOP) No 112, and the Prostitution Reform Bill.

The committee heard from two submitters in support of the Victims' Rights Bill and Supplementary Order Paper No 112. The first, VOICE, represents a group of people who have been victims of serious violent crimes. VOICE supports the aims of the SOP, and had several suggestions for improvement for victims. It also emphasised a need for greater victim participation or inclusion in the offender’s rehabilitative programme. The other submission was from the Human Rights Commission, which encouraged the committee to consider the need for reforms in the area of restorative justice.

The committee spent three hours hearing evidence on the Prostitution Reform Bill from a range of submitters. It started with the Association of Therapeutic Massage Practitioners, who support the bill because it would remove the phrase “massage parlour” from the sex legislation, so the word “massage” would only become associated with the health massage industry. Other submissions in support of the bill came from a distributor of condoms, and the Human Rights Commission. The Association of Auckland Massage Parlours made a submission encouraging the introduction of a licensing regime for premises. Two city councils, Auckland and Manukau, also supported a licensing regime. The Manukau City Council, and the Hunters Corner Business Association noted the recent commencement of street-soliciting at Hunters Corner in Manukau City, something that disturbs the local retailers and residents. They recommend banning street-soliciting in sensitive areas.

Several groups spoke against the bill, including a group of church pastors and two organisations that work with street-solicitors in Auckland.

Next week the remaining submissions on the Electoral Amendment Bill (No 2) will be heard in Wellington. The rest of the month will be spent considering that bill and the Inquiry into the 1999 General Election.

Please contact the Clerk of the Committee for further information about the committee’s meetings for the next month.

Law and Order (Tracey Rayner, SC-LO@parliament.govt.nz)
The Law and Order Committee met on Thursday, 17 May 2001 to consider the 1993/258 Petition of Michael Stove and others, and the Crimes Amendment Bill (No 6) and Supplementary Order Paper No 85.
The committee is still seeking submissions on the Crown Organisations (Criminal Liability) Bill and the Criminal Investigations (Blood Samples - Burglary Suspects) Amendment Bill. The closing date for submissions on both bills is 30 June 2001.
The committee next meets on 24 May 2001 to consider the 1999/153 Petition of John Louis Dean and three others, the 1993/258 Petition of Michael Stove and others and the Crimes Amendment Bill (No 6) and Supplementary Order Paper No 85.

Local Government and Environment (David Bagnall, SC-LGE@parliament.govt.nz)
The committee presented its report on the financial review of the Environmental Risk Management Authority (ERMA), which considers applications for the importation, manufacture, introduction or use of hazardous substances and new organisms. The committee continues to have major concerns about on-going delays to the commencement of the hazardous substances provisions of the Hazardous Substances and New Organisms Act 1996, under which ERMA operates. The committee is also very concerned about the small number of plant import applications and the difficulty in detecting the illegal importation of seeds. Costs and requirements of the application process are a disincentive, particularly for non-commercial imports.

The committee recommends ERMA seek ways to reduce costs and complexities for applicants and objectors, without compromising the fundamental environmental integrity of the Act. It also recommends funding be made available for a targeted public awareness campaign to emphasise the need to protect the environment from unwanted plants. In the report, the committee discusses issues arising from research into genetically modified organisms, including the discovery of unauthorised developments at some universities and Crown research institutes.

On Wednesday, the committee heard evidence on the Local Government (Elected Member Remuneration and Trading Enterprises) Amendment Bill, and considered three local bills promoted by the Auckland City Council. The committee also discussed the Petition of Rosemary Godwin and others relating to asbestos contamination in East Tamaki.

Next week the committee will continue to consider the petition and the Local Government (Elected Member Remuneration and Trading Enterprises) Amendment Bill. Further work will also be done on the Hawke's Bay Endowment Land Empowering Amendment Bill.

Maori Affairs (Marcus Ganley, SC-MA@parliament.govt.nz)
The committee was not open to the public this week. It considered several petitions. Next week the committee will recieve briefings on the Crown Forestry Rental Trust, an update on Lake Omapere, and a briefing from Te Puni Kokiri on the committee's inquiry into Maintstreaming of Services to Maori.

MMP Review (Louise Sparrer, SC-MMP@parliament.govt.nz)
The committee will next meet on 23 May to continue its consideration of the issues raised in submissions on the review of MMP.

Primary Production (Bob Bunch, SC-PP@parliament.govt.nz)
The Primary Production Committee met on Thursday, 17 May 2001, to further consider the Foreign Fishing Crew Wages and Repatriation Bond Bill and its Inquiry into Sustainable Forestry Management.

Next week the committee will further consider the Misuse of Drugs (Industrial Hemp) Amendment Bill.

Regulations Review (Fiona McLean, SC-RR@parliament.govt.nz )
The committee met on Wednesday, 16 May. It will next meet on Wednesday, 23 May to hear evidence from Land Information New Zealand about the Survey (Departmental Fees and Charges) Amendment Regulations 2000 (SR 2000/82) and Land Transfer Amendment Regulations 2000 (SR 2000/83) as they relate to the Landonline automation surcharge. This hearing has been rescheduled from Wednesday, 16 May. Evidence will be heard from 3.30 pm to 4.00 pm and will be open to the public.

Transport and Industrial Relations (Lyn Main, SC-TI@parliament.govt.nz)
The Transport and Industrial Relations Committee will be meeting in Auckland on Monday, 21 May to hear submissions on the Injury Prevention and Rehabilitation Bill. The committee will hear further submissions in Wellington on 30 and 31 May.


Closing dates for submissions
Committees are receiving submissions on the following items with the closing date shown:

Commerce
Review of the Radio New Zealand Charter (25 May 2001)
Sydenham Money Club Bill (31 May 2001)
Telecommunications Bill (13 June 2001)

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade
Terrorism (Bombing and Financing) Bill (13 July 2001)

Law and Order
Criminal Investigations (Blood Samples – Burglary Suspects) Amendment Bill (30 June 2001)
Crown Organisations (Criminal Liability) Bill (30 June 2001)


General

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:

Shelley Banks
Senior Parliamentary Officer
ph: 471 9537, fax: 499 0486, or at shelley.banks@parliament.govt.nz

Compiled in the Select Committee Office, Office of the Clerk, 18 May 2001

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