APPOINTMENT OF COMMITTEE ON TASMANIAN FORESTS AGREEMENT BILL 2012
Mrs ARMITAGE (Launceston) - I was certainly of a mind to support the member for Huon's amendment of a select committee in order to keep this bill alive. I do support this bill but I also believe 'act in haste, repent at leisure'. I believe that the motion before us at the moment by the leader enables us to move forward, to meet the deadlines but still gives us the opportunity to have a select committee and I see that as the best of both worlds.
I will be supporting this. I do not have a problem with that. I believe that the deadlines that have been there certainly have not been of our making and I accept that. On the other hand there are a lot of concerns and issues that have not been addressed that need to be addressed in a select committee. I agree with the member for Murchison that the motion before us currently to do with a select committee after the bill has been passed in principle allows us, if for some reason we are not happy with the protection order and there are things that really do not sit correctly, to still have the opportunity to remove the bill.
I do not believe in speaking for a long time, as you are probably aware, so I will stick to what I have here before me. I see this to be appropriate. I would have been quite happy, as the member for Rosevears has said, to come back next week and the week after. Unfortunately, I have a medical appointment and I cannot stay tomorrow, but I have organised my pairs.
Ms Forrest - You have got the right pair for this one now, have you?
Mrs ARMITAGE - Absolutely, I have. I have no dramas with coming back. I find that it needs to be done by the end of the year, but with a sunset clause. I see this as giving us a sunset clause in that, if for some reason we find, when a select committee has occurred, that we do not feel it is appropriate, the bill can still be chucked out.
It allows us to meet the federal government's deadline - whether they mean it or not. I tend to think that federal governments sometimes say things that they do not mean, particularly with an election coming up. I do feel for Ta Ann but, as has been said, we are looking to the whole of Tasmania and not one company. I appreciate that. I do not like the word 'locking up' reserves because I think we are reserving the land as opposed to locking it up, it is still there. I can appreciate that some members have a great issue with putting a lot more land into reserve.
I will support the motion before us. I believe it is appropriate. It still leaves us the option of going down another track if, at the end of the day, we do not feel that this is as we believed it would be when the protection orders come out. It gives us the best of both worlds. The select committee will inquire into all the details that have not had the chance to go through, but still with the opportunity to meet the deadlines that are required.