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Service Act Amendments Pass Leg Co

CHANGES to the State Service Act were passed by the Legislative Council yesterday morning. The Member for Pembroke, Vanessa Goodwin, moved to amend the Bill to guarantee a regular review by the Auditor-General but this was defeated.

Thanks go to the Tasmanian Liberals who listened to the concerns raised by public sector workers and acted in both Houses of Parliament to amend the legislation. During the House of Assembly debate Labor and Greens members found it highly amusing that the Liberals were the ones standing up for worker’s rights but at the end of the day actions speak much louder than words.

Our efforts weren’t rewarded with the changes we hoped for but they certainly weren’t in vain. The Bill was amended to include a review clause that means the impact of the Act will be reviewed after 3 years and reported to Parliament. Through the debate process it also went on the record that the Auditor-General will be specifically funded to do regular reviews of the State Service, and the current Auditor-General indicated his intention to hold these reviews at least annually. This means that for the foreseeable future the regular, independent reviews we sought will occur. Those commitments only came because we challenged the Bill.

The new State Service governance arrangements will commence once the Act is proclaimed by the Governor. In the next few weeks we’ll send Members a bulletin detailing the impact of the changes.

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