Territory Stories

Debates Day 3 - 02 January 1975



Debates Day 3 - 02 January 1975

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Parliamentary Record 1


Northern Territory. Department of the Legislative Assembly


Debates for 1st Assembly 1974 - 1977; Parliamentary Record; ParliamentNT; 1st Assembly 1974 - 1977




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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pages 30 - 50

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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36 decision, that it ought to be done in writing, in a document wlJiich is publis'hed, a document to which the public ba's access so that they would know not only that they were being governed but how and why they were being governed. The provisions in paragraph (m} authorizing the carrying out of works, clearing of streets and premises, disposing of dangerous structures, are oibv,iously necessary; they must be available to ,anybody dealing with the emergency, and obviously retrospective authority proposed by olause 3 should be given to this. Again, some care i.n the exercise of the power is ne'cessary. I have no comment to make upon the terms of the bHl apart from what I have already said; the provisions of the rest of the bill seem to be a'cceptable. I reserve the right to speak on a number of minor points during ~he committee stages; there will be poss-ibly a need to redraft some clauses. Mr TAMBLING: I am mindful that it is my first opportunity to speak in this chamber. I have for some time been preparing notes for a major speech, and they were all related to what was wrong with Darwin and what we could do to make it a better place in which to live. I find it rather ironical and most distressing that I now have to speak to an emergency bill in which the entire situation has changed and any thoughts or any comments that I may have had previously are no longer relevant at all. I can remember as a child growing up in Darwin looking through family photograph afbums at pictures of the pre-war major cyclone. There was one which always stood out in my mind; it was of the garage in the family yard whioh had been picked up and wrapped around la building. It came back to me time and Uime again right through the cyclone this time when debris was wrapping itself around my house. I never expe'cted that ,there could be such ,a personal involvement in such a disaster. In looking at this bill, we must not be confus'ed with redevelopment or reconstruction ,of the city. This particular bill is designed to cope in the shortest possible term only with the emergency situations which have arisen, therefore the issues of redevelopment and reconstruction should DEBATES-Thursday 2 J,anuary 1975 not enter into our thoughts when lookiing at this bj,H. A number of members of this Assembly were quick to be involv,ed in the disaster ,committees. I saw the member for Milner, the member for Casuarina, the member for Stuart Park and the member for Nightcliff very frequenHy in those first few days on ,a number of committees, in a number of sltuations where we were fully aware of what was going on and what is now proposed in this ,bill in the way of retrospective legis1ation. I support it fully because I feel that, with these other members, I am fully aware of what happened. The members for Jinglli, Viotoria River and Sanderson were also quick to return to the oity and were also quickly involved in all that was going on, just as I am sure the member for Port Darwin was in a number of other areas. Therefore I do not believe we are ignorant of what has gone on. I think that we are ,also very mindful of what must be done and how it must be carried out in the next few weeks. lrt is intended that this bill have a maximum period of 3 months. Let us hope that all of the emergency situations can be adequately coped with in that time. Whilst the honourable member for POl'i Darwin has sa,id that he considers the biU to be a major intrusion <into freedom, I think we have to remember that even in wartime or any other natural disaster, Australia has never known the scope of what has happened in cyclone Tracy. We must also relate it to ~he community in which we live and the resources that we need to sustain 'adequately the life styles of the population that must be resident and supported in that particular .community. 11he restoration and maintenance of services has to go on. Probably the most contentious issue in this whole bill is paragraph (0) of Clause 10 (1); that is the control of the re-entry of people into or departure from the cyclone disaster area. This must be eX'ercised Vvjth caution. When that is implemented, we must look seriously at any frustra:tions that occur. As has been mentioned today, in a number of official areas there have been obvious "booboos". But we must also ensure that we don't open the gartes widely and create more problems and restrict the freedom of both those people here and the others that might return

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