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New site sees improved public access to legislatio

Michael Cullen

16 January, 2008
New site sees improved public access to legislation

A new website launched today will mean greatly improved access to legislation for New Zealanders, Attorney-General Michael Cullen said today.

The new website – – provides free public access to Acts, Regulations, and Bills to anyone with access to the internet.

"Providing public access to legislation is an important step in improving public engagement with the legislative process," Michael Cullen said.

"New Zealanders have a right to know what’s on our statute books and the government has an obligation to make that as easy as possible."

The New Zealand Legislation website is the culmination of the Public Access to Legislation (PAL) project, undertaken by the Parliamentary Counsel Office (PCO) in conjunction with the Office of the Clerk, and the Tax Drafting Unit of the Inland Revenue Department.

The PAL system is designed to improve the way in which New Zealand legislation (Bills, Acts, Statutory Regulations, and Supplementary Order Papers) is made available to the public. The aim is to provide public access to up-to-date official legislation in both printed and electronic form.

As the library of legislation on the website is built up over time, the website will show legislation at all its different stages—from a Bill as introduced, at each stage during its passage through Parliament, to an Act as originally passed, to an Act as it is amended over time, to a repealed Act. The new website also provides extensive information about the site and how to use it, in its "About this site" and "Glossary" sections.

The legislation on the new website will initially be an unofficial version of New Zealand legislation.

The PCO will now undertake a process of "officialising" the legislation, so that the website can ultimately become an official source of New Zealand legislation. This process is expected to take around three years.


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