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Select Committee Business

Select Committee Business

From 13 December to 20 December 2002

Committee meetings

There were nine committee meetings, all in the parliamentary complex.

Reports presented

(available at http://www.clerk.parliament.govt.nz/cgi-bin/select-reports)

Maori Affairs

- 2001/02 financial review of the Ministry of Maori Development (Te Puni Kokiri)

- Ngati Ruanui Claims Settlement Bill (215-2)

Standing Orders

- Interim report on the review of Standing Orders: the publication of legislation and parliamentary information (I.18A)

Bills referred to select committees

The Supreme Court Bill was referred to the Justice and Electoral Committee

Committee notes

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

Commerce (Ethan Tucker, SC-Commerce@parliament.govt.nz)

The committee last met on Thursday, 12 December. It will next meet in February 2003.

The committee is inviting submissions on two bills: the Anglican (Diocese of Christchurch) Church Property Trust Bill (closing date 10 January 2003) and the Rotorua District (Easter Sunday Shop Trading) Bill (closing date 20 December 2002). For details of how to make a submission, consult the publications section of the Office of the Clerk website.

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade (David Sanders, SC-FD@parliament.govt.nz)

The committee is inviting public submissions on the inquiry into New Zealand’s political, economic, trade and cultural relationship with Latin American countries. The closing date for submissions is 21 March 2003. The terms of reference for the inquiry are:

To consider New Zealand’s political, diplomatic, economic, trade and cultural relationship with Latin American countries, including:

- progressing political and diplomatic relationships

- the role of Parliament in developing foreign relations

- opportunities to institutionalise inter-parliamentary relations with Latin American parliaments

- consideration of regional issues such as Antarctica, whaling and a Southern Hemisphere Nuclear Free Zone

- cooperating on global issues

- further developing of trade and the benefits of trade agreements

- implications for New Zealand and the CER agreement with Australia, of Latin American countries participating in the proposed Free Trade Area for the Americas

- the nature, extent and expansion of education services

- the potential benefits of increased tourism, including opportunities for working holidays

- developing services agreements

- the investment relationship

- the promotion and progressing of cultural ties, including links between indigenous people

- the promotion of relevant languages of the region

- any other matters that are considered important including New Zealand’s Latin American strategy.

The committee requires 20 copies of each submission. Those wishing to include any information of a private or personal nature in a submission should first discuss this with the clerk of the committee, as submissions are usually released to the public by the committee. Those wishing to appear before the committee to speak to their submissions should state this clearly and provide a daytime telephone contact number. For further guidance on making a submission, our publication Making a Submission to a Parliamentary Select Committee can be found on our web site at www.clerk.parliament.govt.nz.

Health (Catherine Parkin, SC-Health@parliament.govt.nz)

The committee had a brief meeting this week and will begin hearing submissions on the Health Practitioners Competence Assurance Bill in late January.

Justice and Electoral (Louise Sparrer, SC-JE@parliament.govt.nz)

The committee met this week to progress its consideration of the 2001/02 financial review of the Ministry of Justice.

The committee also agreed to its terms of reference for the inquiry into the 2002 General Election. These are to examine the conduct of the 2002 General Election with particular reference to:

1 The effect of the legislative changes provided for in the Electoral Amendment Act 2002 including, but not limited to, the:

- measures in place for the supervision of donations to registered political parties (sections 214F to 214J of the Electoral Act 1993 refer)

- adequacy of the wording of section 71A of the Electoral Act 1993 (obligation to provide annual declaration regarding party)

- clarity of the rules pertaining to the election expenses regime and its disclosure requirements (in particular the division of election expenditure between party and candidate expenses).

2 The election broadcasting regime with particular reference to:

- the adequacy of the amount provided for allocation to parties in the light of increased costs of broadcasting since that amount was set in 1990 and the increase in the number of eligible parties under MMP

- the differences in the rules for broadcasts promoting an electorate candidate from those promoting a political party; and an electorate candidate’s ability to campaign for both electorate and party vote (section 70(2) of the Broadcasting Act 1989 refers)

- compliance costs that the allocation regime imposes on broadcasters and the Commission

- the desirability of Part VI of the Broadcasting Act 1989 becoming an integral part of the Electoral Act 1993

- whether there should continue to be a prohibition on a party (including one that is not eligible for an allocation) spending its own funds on broadcasting in its election campaign

- whether the introduction of campaign expenditure limits for political parties has removed the need for as restrictive a regime on election broadcasting when other forms of campaign advertising are not so controlled

- clarity of the rules in relation to election advertising broadcast before writ day

- any other issue in relation to the election broadcasting regime.

3 Whether the current tolerance level of plus or minus five percent between electoral boundaries should be changed (section 36 of the Electoral Act 1993) to reflect the changes on this area proposed for local authority elections.

4 Whether local authorities should establish national standards for the management of advertising hoardings for general elections.

The committee is now calling for submissions on these terms of reference. The closing date for submissions is 17 March 2003.

On Tuesday the House referred to the committee the Supreme Court Bill. The Government’s stated public policy objective is to enhance access to justice for all

New Zealanders to a fully indigenous appellate structure that reflects New Zealand society and is domiciled in New Zealand. Appeals to the Privy Council have been a part of New Zealand’s appeal structure for almost 160 years and the bill therefore represents a fundamental constitutional change for New Zealanders. Concerns have been raised by Maori about the effect that ending appeals to the Privy Council may have on the relationship established between the Crown and Maori under the Treaty of Waitangi.

Those who do not support the proposed change argue the proposal lacks the widespread support necessary for a major change of constitutional significance and that any change of this nature requires a public referendum. Other criticisms include that the proposal will deprive New Zealand of access to world-class jurisprudential insight, that it creates the risk of political appointments to the Courts, and that it fails to recognise the dangers of the smallness and closeness of the legal community in New Zealand.

The Chairperson is now calling for submissions on this bill. The closing date for submissions is Friday 28 March 2003. Copies of the bill can be purchased from Bennetts Government Bookshops or downloaded for a fee from www.gplegislation.co.nz

Submissions on both the bill and the inquiry into the 2002 General Election should be addressed to Helena Strange, Justice and Electoral Committee, Bowen House 10.14, Parliament Buildings, Wellington. Twenty copies of a submission are required.

Law and Order (Tracey Rayner, SC-LO@parliament.govt.nz)

The committee did not meet this week as the House was in urgency. The next committee meeting has yet to be scheduled, but is likely to take place when the House resumes sitting next year.

Officers of Parliament (Andrew Beattie, SC-OP@parliament.govt.nz)

The committee met on Thursday, 19 December to considered the appointment of an Ombudsman and the 2003 budgets for Officers of Parliament. The committee will meet next on Thursday, 20 March 2003 to consider the appointment of an Ombudsman and budget proposals for Officers of Parliament.

Primary Production (Bob Bunch, SC-PP@parliament.govt.nz)

The subcommittee on the inquiry into the scampi fishery met on Tuesday, 17 December to make progress on the inquiry. The committee has concluded its meetings for the year and will reconvene on Monday, 10 February 2003, with hearing of evidence from the Ministry of Fisheries on the inquiry into the scampi fishery.

Transport and Industrial Relations (Kath Henderson, SC-TI@parliament.govt.nz)

The committee did not meet this week. At its next meeting on 13 February 2003 the committee will hear evidence on the financial reviews of the Transport Accident Investigation Commission and the Maritime Safety Authority.

Closing dates for submissions

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

Commerce

Anglican (Diocese of Christchurch) Church Property Trust Bill (10 January 2003)

Rotorua District (Easter Sunday Shop Trading) Bill (20 December 2002)

Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade

Inquiry into New Zealand’s political, economic, trade and cultural relationship with Latin American countries (21 March 2003)

Justice and Electoral

Inquiry into the 2002 General Election (17 March 2003)

Supreme Court Bill (28 March 2003)

Local Government and Environment

Marine Reserves Bill (31 January 2003)

Wellington City Empowering and Amendment Bill (28 March 2003)

Primary Production

Inquiry into the administration and management of New Zealand’s scampi fishery (20 December 2002)

Transport and Industrial Relations

Road Traffic Reduction Bill (28 February 2003)

Land Transport Management (28 February 2003)

General

This is the last press release for 2002. The first one for 2003 will be issued at the end of January.

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

carol.rankin@parliament.govt.nz

Compiled in the Select Committee Office, Office of the Clerk, 20 December 2002


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