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MOTION TasWater - Control by Tasmanian Government

Ms Armitage (Launceston) - Mr Deputy President, I move -

That the Terms of Reference for the Select Committee appointed to inquire into and report upon the Tasmanian Government's proposal to take control of TasWater under State Government ownership be amended as follows -

by leaving out all the words after 'report upon' and inserting instead 'the concept of ownership of TasWater by the Government with particular reference to -

(1) The benefits, disadvantages and challenges associated with the Tasmanian Government's proposal to take control of TasWater; and

(2) Any other matters incidental thereto.'

And that -

Mr Armstrong;

Mr Farrell;

Mr Finch;

Mr Gaffney;

Ms Rattray;

Mr Valentine and

the mover be of the committee.

The reason behind this was to more appropriately reflect the feelings of the committee. We have simply changed or included two words - 'concept' - that it is the concept of ownership of TasWater by the Government - and also, to add the word 'disadvantages'. In the previous terms of reference we had 'benefits and challenges'. It was felt adding the word 'disadvantages' would better reflect the feelings of the committee. These are very small changes and I hope that the House approves those changes.

[4.28 p.m.]

Ms Armitage (Launceston) - Mr Deputy President, I thank members for their input. The comments of other members are quite correct. This is to be a short, sharp committee with findings and no recommendations, so we can get information together to help members make a more informed decision. I certainly hope we do not go into months and months, and it certainly was not my intent when I moved the motion. My intention was to try to get the information together so we have actually some findings to assist members with their decisions.

The member for Windermere felt it was a long time. The reason we have taken so long is that when the committee got together, it was only fair that members who formed the committee had their say on its terms of reference. There were a couple of changes which had to come to this House, and this is the first sitting week that this House has had to agree to the changes. The committee is meeting tomorrow morning and the intention is to look at time frames - and it will be advertised this weekend - and then work from there.

I am sure I speak for the committee members when I say we do not want it to drag it on. We want to try to do it in a timely manner, but, as mentioned by the member for Hobart, we are dealing with a very important matter.

It is a huge issue for the Government to be taking over this infrastructure, so we need to make sure we get the correct information that will help members make a timely decision.

I support the motion.

Motion agreed to.

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