Parliamentary record : Part I debates (27 February 1990)
Debates for 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 5th Assembly 1987 - 1990
Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
Northern Territory Legislative Assembly
Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)
Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DEBATES - Tuesday 27 February 1990 amendments to the existing legislation covering the licensing and operations of motor vehicle dealers. Part XI, travel agents, contains uniform provisions relating to the licensing of travel agents and regulation of their operations. It provides for a licensing scheme to set minimum standards of performance and behaviour and guarantees financial viability through membership of a national compensation fund. All states have introduced the uniform provisions. Part XII, codes of practice, provides for the development of codes of practice for fair dealing in consumer transactions and promotes minimum standards of performance. Part XIII, miscellaneous, provides for the making of regulations and associated matters. Originally, it was intended that the model uniform trade measurement provisions developed to replace the existing weights and measures legislation would form part of the consolidated Consumer Affairs Bill. Whil e it is still the government lsi ntent i on to proceed with thi s 1 egi slat i on to further demonstrate cont i nui ng commitment to un iformity and the streamlining of regulations, separate legislation will now be introduced, reflecting similar action interstate. This will ensure the introduction of identical legislation throughout Australia and guarantee adherence to uniformity. The introduction of the Consumer Affairs Bill will usher in a new era of consumer affairs in the Northern Territory, providing greater access to the services and remedies of Consumer Affairs in response to community expectations. It introduces modern updated and generally uniform provisions which are in line with those operating interstate and will contribute to the promotion of a fair market nationally, allowing the Northern Territory to participate with interstate Consumer Affairs authorities on an equal footing. It recognises the expanded role for Consumer Affairs in the promotion of fair trading, acknowledging that both consumers and traders have a legitimate interest in maintaining and promoting honest dealings and fair competition in the expanding Northern Territory marketplace. I commend thi s draft Consumer Affa irs Bi 11 and table it for di scuss ion. Further, I call on interested members of the public to comment on the draft during the next month. Copies will be made available to ensure the widest possible consultation before a final bill is introduced in this House. This bill has been developed, as I mentioned earlier, through an extensive process of consultation and community involvement and I pay credit to the exce 11 ent work carri ed out by the commi ttee. The honourable members for Ludmilla and Jingili were very actively involved in developing these proposals, in compiling the report which was presented to this House in 1988 and in the subsequent discussions. This bill has the potential to be almost the longest bill ever to come before the Legislative Assembly. In many ways, it is revolutionary legislation. Ongoing consultations with various groups in the bus i ness commun i ty who are direct ly a ffected have he 1 ped to sort out the bugs. This is major social legislation which makes it clear that we are not locked into our present situation. We would like to ensure that, after 3 to 4 years of community consultation, we get this as right as possible. The community now has an opportunity to look at the draft bill in detail so that, hopefully, we will be able to introduce a bill in the May sittings and see it proceed with a minimum of controversy and fuss so that we can move into a new era of consumer affairs legislation in the Northern Territory. 8755
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