Bills Digest 17 1996-97 Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 2) 1996


Numerical Index | Alphabetical Index

WARNING:
This Digest is prepared for debate. It reflects the legislation as introduced and does not canvass subsequent amendments.

This Digest was available from 14 August 1996.

CONTENTS

Passage History

Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 2) 1996

Date Introduced: 27 June 1996
House: House of Representatives
Portfolio: Primary Industries and Energy
Commencement: The amendments outlined in this Digest commence on Royal Assent

Purpose

The major amendments proposed by this omnibus Bill:

  • provide the National Registration Authority for Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals with power to charge a prescribed fee for a certificate of export of chemical products;
  • limit the life of a drought exceptional circumstances certificate to the period specified in the certificate;
  • provide for the payment of just compensation where there is an acquisition under the Fisheries Management Act 1991; and
    • allow the making of regulations that enable a person who is alleged to have breached the Quarantine Act 1908, or the regulations, to pay as an alternative to prosecution, a maximum of ten penalty units.

Background

As there is no central theme to the Bill, a brief background to each major amendment is set out below.

Main Provisions

Amendments to the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992

Item 14 of Schedule 2 of the Bill provides the National Registration Authority for Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (NRA) with power to charge a prescribed fee for an export certificate.

Item 15 of Schedule 2 of the Bill, dealing with NRA refusal to grant a export certificate and rights of review, inserts new subsections 69D(1A)-69D(1D) in the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992. The proposed subsections require the NRA, where it refuses to grant an export certificate, to give written notice of the refusal to the applicant and brief reasons for the refusal. An application may be made to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal for a review of a refusal decision. The refusal notice must include a statement that an application may be made by or on behalf of a person whose interests are affected by the decision to the Administrative Appeals Tribunal.

Note: Section 69D of the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992 provides that, on written application of a person wanting to export a chemical product, the National Registration Authority for Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (NRA) may give them, or the government/authority of the country named by the person in their application, a certificate setting out any NRA findings relating to the chemical product that are required for its export. The NRA may of its own initiative tell a body in a foreign country with functions similar to its own of certain matters relating to a chemical product which is proposed to be exported to that country, including that:

  • the product has had its registration refused;
  • the product has had its registration suspended or cancelled; or
  • the registration of the product is subject to conditions significantly limiting its use.

The amendments proposed by items 14 and 15 of this Bill are identical to those proposed by items 13 and 14 of the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 3) 1995. That will lapsed with the dissolution of Parliament for the 1996 election.

Item 16 of Schedule 2 of the Bill inserts a new subsection 69E(3) in the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992 which requires the NRA to provide the Department with an annual statement/s setting out the total amounts of each active constituent imported into, manufactured in, or exported from, Australia by all persons during the year.

Note: It is an offence under section 69E of the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Administration) Act 1992 for a person who imports into, manufactures in, or exports from, Australia active constituents for proposed or existing chemical products, or chemical products, to not give the NRA an annual return setting ut the amounts of the active constituents, or the active constituents, contained in the products, that were imported, manufactured or exported.

The amendment proposed by item 16 of Schedule 2 of this Bill is identical to an amendment proposed by item 15 of the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 3) 1995. That Bill lapsed with the dissolution of Parliament for the 1996 general election.

Amendment of the Fisheries Management Act 1991

A new section 167A is inserted in the Fisheries Management Act 1991 by item 1 of Schedule 4 of the Bill providing that if the operation of the Act would result in an acquisition of property within the meaning of section 51(xxxi) of the Constitution, reasonable compensation or such compensation as is determined by the Federal Court, is payable. Damages or compensation recovered or other remedy given in another proceeding must be taken into account in the assessment of compensation under this proposed section.

Note: Section 51 (xxxi) of the Constitution provides the Parliament with power to make laws with respect to [T]he acquisition of property on just terms from any State or person for any purpose in respect of which the Parliament has power to make laws.

The amendment proposed by item 1 of Schedule 4 of the Bill is identical to an amendment proposed by item 1 of Schedule 3 of the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 3) 1995. That Bill lapsed with the dissolution of the Parliament for the 1996 general election.

Amendment of the Farm Household Support Act 1992

The effect of the amendment to paragraph 8A(2)(b) of the Farm Household Support Act 1992 (FHS Act) proposed by item 1 of Schedule 5 of the Bill is to limit the life of a drought exceptional circumstances certificate to a "specified period".

Item 2 of Schedule 5 of the Bill inserts a new subsection 8A(3) in the FHS Act which provides that a drought exceptional circumstances certificate only has effect for the period specified in it.

Note: The amendments to the FHS Act proposed by this Bill relate to the drought relief payment (DRF). Under section 8A of the FHS Act, to be eligible for DRF a person must, on or after 1 October 1994, be a farmer, at least 18 years of age, an Australian resident and holder of a drought exceptional circumstances certificate.

Such a certificate is defined to be one issued by a Rural Adjustment Scheme (RAS) authority on or after 7 October 1994 under a memorandum of understanding between the RAS authority and the Secretary of the Department of Primary Industries and Energy which relates to the farm enterprise of the person.

The amendments proposed by items 1 and 2 of Schedule 5 are identical to those proposed by items 1 and 2 of Schedule 6 of the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 3) 1995. That Bill lapsed with the dissolution of Parliament for the 1996 general election.

Amendment of the Imported Food Control Act 1992

The effect of items 1 and 3 of Schedule 6 of the Bill is to allow persons other than Australian Quarantine Inspection Service officers to be appointed as authorised officers.

Note: Section 40 of the Imported Food Control Act 1992 provides the Secretary of the Department of Primary Industries and Energy with the power to appoint an officer of the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service for the purposes of exercising the powers of an authorised officer under the Act, or such powers as ares specified in the instrument. Power of an authorised officer under the Act include powers of inspection.

The amendments proposed by items 1 and 3 of Schedule 6 of the Bill are identical to those proposed by items 1 and 3 of Schedule 7 of the Primary Industries and Energy Legislation Amendment Bill (No. 3) 1995. That Bill lapsed with the dissolution of Parliament for the 1996 general election.

Amendment of the Quarantine Act 1908

A new paragraph 87(1)(s) is inserted in the Quarantine Act 1908 by item 1 of Schedule 7 which allows the making of regulations that enable a person who is alleged to have breached the Act or the regulations to pay, as an alternative to prosecution, a maximum of ten penalty units.

Note: One penalty unit is equivalent to $100.

Contact Officer and Copyright Details

Ian Ireland Ph. 06 277 2438
13 August 1996
Bills Digest Service
Parliamentary Research Service

This Digest does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be consulted to determine whether the Bill has been enacted and, if so, whether the subsequent Act reflects further amendments.

PRS staff are available to discuss the paper's contents with Senators and Members and their staff but not with members of the public.

ISSN 1323-9032
© Commonwealth of Australia 1996

Except to the extent of the uses permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without the prior written consent of the Parliamentary Library, other than by Members of the Australian Parliament in the course of their official duties.

Published by the Department of the Parliamentary Library, 1996.

This page was prepared by the Parliamentary Library, Commonwealth of Australia
Last updated: 9 August 1996

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