Australian National Training Authority Amendment Bill 2003

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Bills Digest No. 24   2003-04

Australian National Training Authority Amendment Bill 2003

This Digest was prepared for debate. It reflects the legislation as introduced and does not canvass subsequent amendments. This Digest does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be consulted to determine the subsequent official status of the Bill.


Passage History
Main Provisions
Contact Officer & Copyright Details

Passage History

Australian National Training Authority Amendment Bill 2003

Date Introduced: 14 August 2003

House: House of Representatives

Portfolio: Education, Science and Training

Commencement: Formal provisions commence on Royal Assent, Schedule 1 by Proclamation and Schedule 2 on 1 January 2004



This Bill would amend the Australian National Training Authority Act 1992 to

  • increase from five to seven the numbers of members of the Australian National Training Authority (ANTA) (i.e. other than the Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson), and
  • no longer require that new ANTA agreements be incorporated in a schedule to the Act.


The creation of the Australian National Training Authority (ANTA) in 1992 marked the beginning of a new era in Commonwealth, State and Territory collaboration in vocational education and training.(1) Commonwealth funding to support State and Territory administered vocational education and training, which is appropriated under the Vocational Education and Training Funding Act 1992, is distributed by ANTA. The quantum of funds available for distribution is determined by agreement between the Commonwealth and the States and Territories. The ANTA Agreement which usually spans a period of three years, addresses the funding responsibilities of the parties and their policy directions and priorities. Since 1992 there have been 3 ANTA agreements and a fourth is currently being negotiated.(2)

Increasing the size of the ANTA Board

The Minister, in his second reading speech, has said that the proposal to increase the size of the ANTA Board emerged from Ministerial Council(3) and reflects the Council s view that it will increase the capacity of the Board to provide high quality advice. The filling of the proposed new positions will be the responsibility of the Ministerial Council. The ANTA web site provides the following description and details of the ANTA Board and its members:

The ANTA Board is industry-led. Members are nominated by the ANTA Ministerial Council and appointed by the Governor General.

The Board is chaired by Stuart Hornery, AO, former chairman, Lend Lease Corporation Ltd. Other members are:

  • Stella Axarlis, AM, Deputy Chair ANTA Board; Chair, Peninsula Health Service;
  • Vince O'Rourke, AM, former chief executive officer of Queensland Rail;
  •   Leonie Clyne, managing director and owner of Angus Clyne Australia Pty Ltd;
  • Dr Evelyn Scott, AO, chairwoman of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Corporation for Women;
  • David Hind, BOC's managing director, process gas solutions, South Pacific;
  • Julius Roe, national president of the Australian Manufacturing Workers Union.

Ex-officio Member

  • John Smyth, chief executive officer of the Institute of TAFE Tasmania.

The ANTA Agreement

The Australian National Training Authority Act 1992 currently requires that the legislation be amended to incorporate any newly negotiated ANTA Agreement into Schedule 1 of the Act. The amendments in this Bill would no longer require that the Act be amended to give effect to the ANTA Agreement, thereby changing the nature of parliamentary consideration of the details of any new ANTA agreement. The Minister has said in his second reading speech that when the agreement for 2004 to 2006, which is currently being negotiated, is signed by all parties, he will make it public by tabling it in Parliament. This proposed process of tabling the new agreement, is however not prescribed in the proposed amendments and so may only be taken to apply to the next agreement.

Although each new ANTA Agreement details the Commonwealth s commitment of grants to the States and Territories for vocational education and training for the duration of the agreement, the Commonwealth appropriations which give effect to this commitment are actually made under a different Act, the Vocational Education and Training Funding Act 1992. Any new funding arrangements will therefore be considered by the Parliament in the context of amendments to this Act. In addition, the terms of recent ANTA Agreements have involved the Commonwealth in maintaining its level of base funding, therefore requiring annual amendments to this Act for indexation purposes.

Main Provisions

Schedule 1 relates to the membership of ANTA. The effect of item 1 of schedule 1 is to increase the number of members of the Authority, other than the Chairperson or Deputy Chairperson, from 5 to 7. Items 2-4 amend the operational requirements as a consequence of this increase in membership, by increasing the number of allowable membership vacancies and of members required for quorums and the carrying of resolutions.

Schedule 2 relates to the ANTA Agreement. Item 1 substitutes a new definition so that new ANTA agreements will no longer have to be incorporated as a schedule in the Act and item 2 repeals Schedule 1 where the text of each new ANTA agreement has previously been incorporated. Items 4 and 5 are consequential amendments to affected subsections of the Vocational Education and Training Funding Act 1992.


  1. For a more detailed account of this see Bills Digest, no. 35, 1998 99.
  2. For an account of the terms of the various ANTA agreements and negotiations for a new one see
    Bills Digest, no. 22, 2003 04.
  3. The Australian National Training Authority (ANTA) Ministerial Council is comprised of Commonwealth, State and Territory Ministers with responsibility for vocational education and training.

Contact Officer and Copyright Details

Carol Kempner
22 August 2003
Bills Digest Service
Information and Research Services

This paper has been prepared for general distribution to Senators and Members of the Australian Parliament. While great care is taken to ensure that the paper is accurate and balanced, the paper is written using information publicly available at the time of production. The views expressed are those of the author and should not be attributed to the Information and Research Services (IRS). Advice on legislation or legal policy issues contained in this paper is provided for use in parliamentary debate and for related parliamentary purposes. This paper is not professional legal opinion. Readers are reminded that the paper is not an official parliamentary or Australian government document.

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ISSN 1328-8091
© Commonwealth of Australia 2003

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Published by the Department of the Parliamentary Library, 2003.

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