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Annual Report 2016-2017 Department of the Legislative Assembly



Annual Report 2016-2017 Department of the Legislative Assembly

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Tabled paper 405


Tabled Papers for 13th Assembly 2016 - 2020; Tabled Papers; ParliamentNT






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DLA Annual Report 2016-17 Page 10 Agency Operations House Division Office of the Clerk The Office of the Clerk has two roles: the first is to provide procedural advice and support to the Speaker and Members of the Legislative Assembly; the second is to provide executive leadership of the Department of the Legislative Assembly. The Office of the Clerk supports all domestic committees such as the Standing Orders, Privileges and House Committees. Independent Research Service In October 2016 the NT Government provided fixed term funding to support the creation of two Independent Research positions to support to Independent Members of the Legislative Assembly by producing comprehensive, reliable, impartial and timely research reports, briefing material and other information when requested. These positions report to the Clerk. The Research Service responds to individual and confidential requests on topics of specific concern to the Member and/or their electorate, and produces shared resources covering legislation reviews, parliamentary process, and economic and social issues of importance to the Northern Territory. The Research Service does not engage in overtly political research or speech writing. The service has established a reputation for timely, informative and useful research and in the first three months of operation undertook research for four Independent Members and completed 20 research requests. Finance Unit The Finance Unit provides strategic advice and tactical management on financial and budgetary matters to the Speaker, the Clerk and the Departments Board of Management. It ensures legislative and regulatory compliance for the finance function and manages departmental accounting policies, standards and processes. Procedural Services and Security Unit Procedural Services includes the Hansard and Table Office Units that are responsible for the provision of administrative and procedural support and advice to Members during meetings of the Assembly, producing parliamentary documentation and records and managing related databases. During the reporting period, the Hansard Unit trialled and implemented a new staffing structure to support the Estimates process using Hansard Reporters instead of typists for the transcription of the hearings. Hansard Reporters do not type verbatim (as typists do) but slightly edit the content to ensure it makes sense in written form and that all punctuation is correct. The Table Office continued work on improving the new DLA website including uploading and tabled papers to ensure information is readily available online. The functionality of the new website is limited and the DLA is investigating a solution that offers database functionality to host and allow for advanced search of both tabled papers and Parliamentary Records for all Assemblies. In partnership with NT Libraries the DLA is trialling the use of the Territory Stories database as the DLAs Tabled Paper database due to the advanced search method it provides for Parliamentary Records. The Security Unit provides security services and coordinates emergency management activities to ensure a safe and secure workplace for Members, Staff, Parliament House building occupants and visitors. During the reporting period, approximately 164,000 visitors and building staff were screened 30,000 times on entry to Parliament House. There were no major security incidents.