Tuesday, 2 August 2022
The PRESIDENT (Hon. N Elasmar) took the chair at 11.34 am and read the prayer.
Acknowledgement of country
The PRESIDENT (11:35): On behalf of the Victorian state Parliament I acknowledge the Aboriginal peoples, the traditional custodians of this land which has served as a significant meeting place of the First People of Victoria. I acknowledge and pay respect to the elders of the Aboriginal nations in Victoria past, present and emerging and welcome any elders and members of the Aboriginal communities who may visit or participate in the events or proceedings of the Parliament.
The PRESIDENT (11:35): I wish to acknowledge that the Parliament of Victoria’s executive chef, Michael Craig, passed away on the morning of Wednesday, 29 June 2022. Michael was a loving husband and father to wife, Anne; daughter, Maddy; and son, Archie. Michael has been a valued member of the Parliament team and community since 2012 and will be deeply missed. Many of his colleagues were impressed by his early morning starts, his stylish work ethic and sharp sense of humour. His courage and determination will live on in all who knew him. On behalf of all members in this house I wish to express my deepest condolences to Michael’s family.
Hon. Jane Garrett MLC
The PRESIDENT (11:36): I wish to acknowledge that on Saturday, 2 July 2022, we received the devastating news of the passing of our friend and colleague the Honourable Jane Garrett. On behalf of all members in this house, I wish to express my deepest condolences and sympathies to Jane’s family and friends. A motion of condolence would ordinarily take place in this chamber today, followed by a suspension of proceedings. However, at Jane’s family’s request this will occur tomorrow so that they may be in the gallery. I call on Ms Symes to seek leave to move a motion to establish the order of business of the sitting week.
Business of the house
Standing and sessional orders
Ms SYMES (Northern Victoria—Leader of the Government, Attorney-General, Minister for Emergency Services) (11:37): I move, by leave:
That this house acknowledges the passing of the Honourable Jane Garrett MLC and notes that as her family will be in attendance in the Legislative Council Chamber on Wednesday, 3 August 2022, the standing and sessional orders be suspended to the extent necessary to allow the following order of business to occur today and tomorrow:
Members statements (up to 15 members)
At 1.30 pm Lunchbreak
At 2.00 pm Questions
Constituency questions (up to 15 members)
Answers to questions on notice (non-government members may seek an explanation in relation to unanswered questions on notice, pursuant to standing order 8.13)
General business (until 7.15 pm)
At 7.15 pm Statements on reports, papers and petitions (30 minutes)
Government business (maximum 60 minutes)
At 8.45 pm Adjournment (up to 20 members)
A motion of condolence for the Honourable Jane Garrett MLC, pursuant to standing order 5.12.
Mr DAVIS (Southern Metropolitan—Leader of the Opposition) (11:38): I just want to say that whilst the opposition would normally have preferred the recognition of Jane Garrett to have occurred today, we understand the reasons and support the government’s step there. I note that there has been a collaboration to work through the non-government business—I think that is not just with the opposition but with the other non-government parties too. I put on record my respect for the fact that that has occurred and that there is a number of aspects, including an understanding we will read that bill on Thursday.
Motion agreed to.
Casino and Liquor Legislation Amendment Bill 2022
Child Employment Amendment Bill 2022
Gambling and Liquor Legislation Amendment Bill 2022
Summary Offences Amendment (Nazi Symbol Prohibition) Bill 2022
The PRESIDENT (11:39): I have a message from the Governor, dated 28 June:
The Governor informs the Legislative Council that she has, on this day, given the Royal Assent to the undermentioned Act of the present Session presented to her by the Clerk of the Parliaments:
26/2022 Casino and Liquor Legislation Amendment Act 2022
27/2022 Child Employment Amendment Act 2022
28/2022 Gambling and Liquor Legislation Amendment Act 2022
29/2022 Summary Offences Amendment (Nazi Symbol Prohibition) Act 2022
Public Accounts and Estimates Committee
The PRESIDENT (11:39): I advise the house that I have received a letter from the Honourable Lizzie Blandthorn, member for Pascoe Vale, resigning from the Public Accounts and Estimates Committee, effective from 1 August 2022.
Ms SYMES (Northern Victoria—Leader of the Government, Attorney-General, Minister for Emergency Services) (11:40): I wish to advise the house that Mr Lee Tarlamis will now be the Government Whip in the Legislative Council.
Ms SYMES (Northern Victoria—Leader of the Government, Attorney-General, Minister for Emergency Services) (11:40): I further advise that there have been a number of changes to the government ministry, and I seek leave, rather than reading the full list, that it be incorporated in Hansard.
Incorporated list as follows:
In the Legislative Council, the Honourable Harriet Shing will now be the Minister for Water, Minister for Regional Development and Minister for Equality. She will represent the portfolios of Creative Industries, Housing, Multicultural Affairs, Planning, Prevention of Family Violence, and Women in the other place.
The Honourable Gayle Tierney will add Agriculture to her existing portfolio responsibilities. She will now answer questions on behalf of the following portfolios—
• Crime Prevention
• Victim Support; and
• Youth Justice.
The Honourable Shaun Leane will now be the Minister for Commonwealth Games Legacy and Minister for Veterans. He will represent the following portfolios from the other place—
• Commonwealth Games Delivery
• Environment and Climate Action
• Local Government
• Mental Health
• Ports and Freight
• Solar Homes
• Suburban Development; and
• Treaty and First Peoples.
The Honourable Jaala Pulford will now answer questions on behalf of the following portfolios—
• Business Precincts
• Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation
• Fishing and Boating
• Industry Support and Recovery
• Public Transport
• Roads and Road Safety
• Suburban Rail Loop
• Tourism, Sport and Major Events; and
• Transport Infrastructure.
The Honourable Ingrid Stitt will now be the Minister for Workplace Safety and Minister for Early Childhood and Pre-Prep. She will represent the portfolios of Child Protection and Family Services, Community Sport, Disability, Ageing and Carers, and Youth in the other place.
I will now answer questions on behalf of the following portfolios—
• Assistant Treasurer
• Ambulance Services
• Economic Development
• Government Services
• Industrial Relations
• Regulatory Reform; and
In the other place, the Honourable Jacinta Allan will now be the Deputy Premier and will add Commonwealth Games Delivery to her portfolio responsibilities.
The Treasurer will add Trade to his existing portfolio responsibilities.
The Minister for Roads and Road Safety will add Industry Support and Recovery, and Business Precincts, to his portfolio responsibilities.
The Energy, Environment and Climate Change portfolio has been split and renamed. The Honourable Lily D’Ambrosio will remain responsible for these portfolios as the Minister for Energy, Minister for Environment and Climate Action and Minister for Solar Homes.
The Honourable Melissa Horne will now add Local Government and Suburban Development to her existing portfolio responsibilities.
The Assistant Treasurer will add Housing to his portfolio responsibilities.
The Minister for Multicultural Affairs will add Prevention of Family Violence to her portfolio responsibilities.
The Honourable Lizzie Blandthorn will now be the Minister for Planning.
The Honourable Colin Brooks will now be the Minister for Child Protection and Family Services, and Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers.
The Honourable Anthony Carbines will now be the Minister for Police, Minister for Crime Prevention and Minister for Racing.
The Honourable Steve Dimopoulos will now be the Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events, and Minister for Creative Industries.
The Honourable Natalie Hutchins will now be the Minister for Education and Minister for Women.
The Honourable Sonya Kilkenny will now be the Minister for Corrections, Minister for Youth Justice, Minister for Victim Support, and Minister for Fishing and Boating.
The Honourable Mary-Anne Thomas will now be the Minister for Health and Minister for Ambulance Services.
The Honourable Gabrielle Williams will now be the Minister for Mental Health and Minister for Treaty and First Peoples.
Following petition presented to house:
The Petition of certain citizens of the State of Victoria draws to the attention of the Legislative Council that there is a need to relieve the financial burden of excessive toll rates on privately owned utes.
Melbourne toll road operators for Citylink and EastLink, have different rates for light commercial vehicles, which includes utes, as opposed to four-wheel drive wagons. This applies whether a vehicle is privately owned or not. Compared to driving a wagon, it is 46 per cent more expensive for a casual ute user to drive on CityLink.
Wagons are heavier and more expensive vehicles compared to most utes. However, the toll rates for wagons are considerably less than utes. This system is incredibly unfair to families and imposes a significant financial burden on young apprentice tradespeople who drive utes. There is a need for review.
Utes are common family vehicles and to classify a ute as a light commercial vehicle is unfair.
The petitioners therefore request that the Legislative Council call on the Government to change the vehicle classification system so that all privately owned utes pay the same rates as passenger vehicles on toll roads.
By Mr BARTON (Eastern Metropolitan) (1065 signatures).
Laid on table.
Integrity and Anti-Corruption (Higher Standards for Lobbyists, Ministers, and Members of Parliament) Bill 2022
Introduction and first reading
Dr RATNAM (Northern Metropolitan) (11:41): I move to introduce a bill for an act to reform the standards for ministers, parliamentary secretaries and members of Parliament by establishing the Parliamentary Integrity Commissioner and making amendments to the Members of Parliament (Standards) Act 1978, the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission Act 2011 and the Parliamentary Committees Act 2003 and for other purposes, and I move:
That the bill be now read a first time.
Motion agreed to.
Read first time.
Dr RATNAM: I move, by leave:
That the second reading be made an order of the day for the next day of meeting.
Motion agreed to.
Planning and Environment Amendment (Wake Up to Climate Change) Bill 2022
Introduction and first reading
Mr HAYES (Southern Metropolitan) (11:42): I move to introduce a bill for an act to amend the Planning and Environment Act 1987 to recognise and respond to the climate impacts resulting from planning and for other purposes, and I move:
That the bill be now read a first time.
Motion agreed to.
Read first time.
Mr HAYES: I move, by leave:
That the second reading be made an order of the day for the next day of meeting.
Motion agreed to.
Victorian Health Building Authority
Frankston Hospital Redevelopment Project: Project Summary
Ms SYMES (Northern Victoria—Leader of the Government, Attorney-General, Minister for Emergency Services) (11:42): I move, by leave:
That there be laid before this house a copy of the Frankston Hospital Redevelopment Project: Project Summary, June 2022.
Motion agreed to.
Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee
Alert Digest No. 10
Mr GEPP (Northern Victoria) (11:43): Pursuant to section 35 of the Parliamentary Committees Act 2003, I lay on the table Alert Digest No. 10 of 2022 from the Scrutiny of Acts and Regulations Committee, including appendices. I move:
That the report be published.
Motion agreed to.
Environment and Planning Committee
Inquiry into the Protections within the Victorian Planning Framework
Ms TERPSTRA (Eastern Metropolitan) (11:43): Pursuant to standing order 23.29, I lay on the table an interim report from the Environment and Planning Committee on the inquiry into the protections within the Victorian planning framework, including an appendix, extracts of proceedings and minority reports. I move:
That the report be published.
Motion agreed to.
Ms TERPSTRA: I move:
That the Council take note of the report.
On 28 October 2020 the Legislative Council agreed to a motion requiring the Environment and Planning Committee to inquire into, consider and report by June 2022 on the adequacy of the planning and Environment Act 1987 and the Victorian Planning Framework in relation to planning and heritage protection.
There were six broad areas of the inquiry, and they were, in broad brush strokes: the high cost of housing; (2) environmental sustainability and vegetation protection; (3) delivering certainty and fairness in planning decisions—and this also touched on things like mandatory height limits, green wedge protections and VCAT appeal processes, amongst other things; (4) the adequacy of the heritage protections in Victoria, including tree removal; (5) ensuring residential zones are delivering for the type of housing that communities want; and (6) any other matters that the committee considered relevant. The full terms of reference are of course set out in the report.
The original referral for this report was for it to be a desktop-style of review; however, there were 287 written submissions from individuals, groups or organisations, which gave the committee a breadth of information to consider. I would like to thank each submitter for providing the committee with their written evidence for our consideration. I do appreciate the time, dedication and commitment that many submitters have given in providing that for the committee to consider, and again I thank them for their efforts.
Although the terms of reference were referred to the committee by the Legislative Council some time ago, the committee already had four substantial inquiries in a queue, and in accordance with its practice, each inquiry was completed in the order in which it was referred by the house. The timing of the referral was and remains a matter for the crossbench member who sought it. Consequently, by the time the committee had completed the various inquiries, with the last one being completed in May 2022, there remained insufficient time during this term of Parliament to undertake a full and comprehensive inquiry into the planning framework, and it was the majority view of the committee that anything less than a full inquiry would be inadequate. The committee resolved that the report into the Victorian planning framework therefore would be an interim report. As such, the committee has made only one recommendation, and that is that a full inquiry be undertaken at the beginning of the next term of Parliament to ensure that the issues raised in the terms of reference can be given due consideration. So this remains a matter for the next Parliament.
In terms of the timing of the inquiry, it is also worth noting that there are significant reviews being undertaken or recently completed by the Victorian government into elements of the planning framework. All of these changes and reforms would need to be taken into account in any other inquiry.
Additionally, this inquiry was shrouded with confusion, stimulated by a lack of understanding about parliamentary inquiry processes, driven by some who should have known better. For example, there has been commentary that the decision not to hold public hearings was somehow an attempt to close down the inquiry. This misunderstanding was also reflected and perpetuated in some of the written submissions which the committee received, which were apparently of the view that this was a government inquiry rather than a parliamentary inquiry. All of that is simply untrue. The Environment and Planning Committee is a committee of the Parliament that has 10 members, only three of whom are government members. The government does not have any control over this committee and the decisions which are made by the committee.
Also of note is the desire by some crossbench members to draft terms of reference for committee inquiries that really are a burger with the lot. This approach has consequences. By way of comparison, the committee’s major inquiry into ecosystem decline in Victoria, whose report was tabled in December 2021, took more than 12 months to complete and involved 16 full days of public hearings. It was the largest inquiry that the committee had ever undertaken. The inquiry into the planning framework is of a similar size and complexity and would be comparable in terms of the time needed to complete it—if not more. This should serve as a salutary lesson for committee referrals in future, as such large inquiries require a significant commitment of all members’ time and require each and every member’s full attention.
It is the committee’s intention in making its recommendation that the newly constituted committee be referred the terms of reference at the beginning of the new Parliament, when there will be time to undertake all of the necessary steps, including a detailed legislative and regulatory review of the current planning framework as well as extensive public hearings to enable stakeholders and the community to have their say on the issues that matter to them.
Finally, I would like to thank all members of the committee for their time and attention during this inquiry and in particular for their patience regarding the difficulties experienced in terms of timing. I would like to thank the secretariat for their thorough examination of submissions and the work they did in pulling this report together. In particular would like to thank committee manager Michael Baker, inquiry officer Vivienne Bannan, research assistants Hong Tran and Jessica Wescott and the administration team of Sylvette Bassy, Cat Smith and Justine Donohue. I commend this report to the house.
Mr HAYES (Southern Metropolitan) (11:49): I want to thank the committee because what we have produced is a good report. The important thing is that it is only an interim report. The full report, the committee agrees, will follow in the next Parliament. However, this report today draws attention to the urgent need for reforms to planning and heritage.
The first thing to say is there was much disappointment in the community that no public hearings took place. Many of us believe there was adequate time to hear some viable witnesses, but the committee decided otherwise. With over 200 written submissions, what was very evident was the widespread concern at the breakdown of proper planning processes, including environment and heritage protection. There were very few submissions indeed which said the system was in a good state of health.
While the majority of the report covered many concerns of various submitters, some important points needed more coverage. I urge those interested to read my minority report. It includes more evidence in relation to housing affordability. We only ever hear about supply problems, but the problems of Victoria’s unplanned and high rates of population growth are adding hugely to demand, as mentioned in a number of submissions, and these are better reflected in my minority report. I draw attention to five separate submissions about property developer political donations reducing fairness in planning decisions. As well, some further improvements to the heritage system, greater protection for local heritage sites and greater regulation of demolitions were all discussed.
However, it is a very good report. Much reform is needed, and I look forward to that process continuing next year with a full public inquiry that hears evidence from witnesses. That is a must. I wish to thank the committee secretary, Michael Baker, and his hardworking crew for their efforts on this report. I want to thank the committee members and I want to thank all those staff members that Ms Terpstra mentioned. And I want to thank many people who made submissions to this inquiry; the information they provided was invaluable.
Mr DAVIS (Southern Metropolitan—Leader of the Opposition) (11:51): I want to make a number of points about this inquiry into the protections within the Victorian planning framework. We supported the reference in the chamber, and it is a pity that the committee’s order of business has not allowed it to do the work that I think it could have done on this. Importantly, I wrote to the committee on behalf of the opposition seeking to have concurrent matters considered, specifically about canopy trees and heritage protections. These are very important points. The committee, in my view, made a mistake in rejecting those important matters which should have been considered concurrently with this explicitly, and I think that, given the massive loss of tree canopy, it is a pity that they did not take that option. It is also a pity, given the very significant loss of heritage buildings, that that matter was also not considered formally concurrently with these matters.
I want to in addition draw attention to one other key matter—and there are many, as has been alluded to. But in the small period of time I have I want to draw attention specifically to the push by the Greens to increase the tax on housing to pay for social housing. Now, I understand the importance of social housing, but I do not want to see the government’s taxes, specifically their big new housing tax, increased in the way that the Greens are proposing. Labor’s proposal, which they have stepped back from, at least temporarily, would have seen a very significant charge and would have resulted in about $20 000 per metropolitan property on a median-priced property—an additional tax layer. The Greens’ proposal is to double that, which would be $40 000 on every median property in the metropolitan area. That would be a massive slug; it would hurt families. And I say neither Labor nor the Greens can be trusted with housing affordability.
Dr RATNAM (Northern Metropolitan) (11:53): I too would like to speak to the tabled report of the inquiry into the protections within the Victorian planning framework. I want to thank everyone who made a submission to this inquiry; the committee secretariat and staff, who have done an incredible job going through a broad range of submissions; and my colleague Mr Hayes for moving the motion for this inquiry to begin and for the opportunity to work together on developing the terms of reference. It is an area of policy interest that we have been working on together.
This inquiry was important because, as so many of us know from talking to our community, Victoria’s state planning system is not producing the type of affordable, sustainable and livable homes that we need for Victoria’s future and is in dire need of an urgent overhaul. This inquiry offered so much promise for a long-overdue deep investigation into Victoria’s planning system and how it could be improved and strengthened, something our community and our local councils have been championing for years on end without much response from government.
Unfortunately the committee made a decision not to hold public hearings, which was quite unprecedented, and it is my view that we would have had the time to be able to conduct public hearings and do more in-depth investigation should the committee have supported this. I know many submitters were deeply disappointed at this decision. Should we have been able to meet with submitters, a full inquiry would have found that Victoria’s land use and planning system is delivering unaffordable, unsustainable and poor-quality urban development and not meeting the challenges posed by climate change.
The system is experienced by many in the community as overly complex and frustrating. There are mechanisms available to increase affordable housing that the government is not making available to us. We need further strengthening of Aboriginal cultural heritage protection and other heritage protection in the community. We need a full parliamentary inquiry, and it is something that I and the Greens will be pushing for in the next term of Parliament.
Mr MELHEM (Western Metropolitan) (11:55): I also rise to speak on the report by the Environment and Planning Committee. I just want to respond to a couple of comments by Mr Davis. Mr Davis does not always like to let the truth stand in the way of a good story. He turned up to the meeting at the last minute. When the reference was made to this committee, the reason the committee was not able to hold hearings in relation to this matter was because of the time frame.
Mr Davis: On a point of order, President, I did step in as a substitute member because Dr Bach was spending time with his new baby.
The PRESIDENT: Order! You know, Mr Davis, that is not a point of order.
Mr MELHEM: The reason the committee was not able to proceed with full hearings was because of the time frame and the various other references the committee had to deal with. We were running out of time. As members will recall, we have got four weeks to go.
I want to congratulate Mr Hayes on bringing a reference to the committee through the Parliament, and I want to commend the staff for the wonderful work they have done in putting together this discussion paper. Enormous work went into this. Unfortunately we have not been able to have meetings with people who made submissions or conduct public hearings, as I said, but I think the report itself—it is an excellent report—could form the foundation, as agreed by the whole committee, for the next Parliament, hopefully, to be able to do comprehensive work on this subject, which I am sure is of interest to a lot of Victorians. I will finish off by again thanking all the committee members and also the staff, led by Mike Baker, for the great work they have done. I am looking forward, hopefully in the next Parliament, to basically doing a more extensive inquiry into this issue.
Motion agreed to.
Pandemic Declaration Accountability and Oversight Committee
Review of the Pandemic (Visitors to Hospitals and Care Facilities) Orders and Review of the Pandemic (Quarantine, Isolation and Testing) Orders
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 35(2) of the Parliamentary Committees Act 2003 and following transmission of the reports on 22 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Pandemic Declaration Accountability and Oversight Committee’s report Review of the Pandemic (Visitors to Hospitals and Care Facilities) Orders and the Pandemic Declaration Accountability and Oversight Committee’s report Review of the Pandemic (Quarantine, Isolation and Testing) Orders.
Mr ERDOGAN (Southern Metropolitan) (11:58): I move:
That the transcripts of evidence lie on the table and the reports be published.
Motion agreed to.
Mr ERDOGAN: I move:
That the Council take note of the reports.
I am pleased to present the transcripts of evidence for the Pandemic Declaration Accountability and Oversight Committee’s review of thePandemic (Quarantine, Isolation and Testing) Orders and review of the Pandemic (Visitors to Hospitals and Care Facilities) Orders. The Pandemic Declaration Accountability and Oversight Committee has the function of reviewing the pandemic orders and other instruments made by the Minister for Health under the pandemic management framework of the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008. It was established following passage of the Public Health and Wellbeing Amendment (Pandemic Management) Act 2021 on 2 December 2021 in this chamber. This is the committee’s first report in its ongoing review of pandemic orders issued by the Minister for Health. In doing so the committee examined the orders to ensure compliance with the Public Health and Wellbeing Act, including any retrospective effects; taxes, fees, fines and penalties; shifting of the legal burden of proof to a person accused of an offence; or subdelegation of any powers that have already been delegated by the act. The committee also reviews the orders to ensure that they are compatible with human rights set out in the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006.
The global COVID-19 pandemic represents a profound and unprecedented public health threat. Here in Victoria the pandemic remains an evolving challenge.
In light of this I am pleased to report that the joint investigatory committee found that the orders were compliant with the requirements of the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008. Further, the committee was satisfied that the pandemic orders do not limit the right to privacy under the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006. Throughout this review the committee considered all variations of the orders that had been introduced to the date the reports were adopted with a view to making an assessment as to whether the government’s approach to issuing pandemic orders struck the right balance between protecting public health and reducing the burden placed on Victorians.
Across the two reports the committee has made a total of 11 findings and three recommendations. The committee held 33 public hearings over eight days involving 66 individual witnesses. We heard from a wide range of stakeholders, including government ministers and officials, healthcare providers, community groups, advocacy groups, unions, mental health professionals and providers, and schools.
I would like to join with my committee colleagues in expressing my sincere thanks to all of those who contributed to this inquiry. The committee has held over 25 meetings since 21 December 2021. I would like to thank my parliamentary colleagues on their outstanding commitment to this committee: the chair, Ms Sheed in the other place; the deputy chair, Mr Bourman; Ms Shing; Ms Crozier; and members in the other place—Mr Carbines, Mr Bull, Ms Kealy, Ms Ward and Mr Wells. I also thank the committee secretariat for their fantastic support—in particular, executive officer Matt Newington, who managed the large volume of work diligently; research officer Caitlin Connally; and the administrative team—Larissa Volpe, Ebony Cousins, Liz Stankovic and Michelle Summerhill. In conclusion, in tabling these transcripts I commend the report to the house.
Ms CROZIER (Southern Metropolitan) (12:02): I would also like to make some remarks in relation to the tabling of the reports Review of the Pandemic (Visitors to Hospitals and Care Facilities)Orders and Review of the Pandemic (Quarantine, Isolation and Testing) Orders. I was a part of the committee and would have liked to have had more committee meetings and more hearings, as Mr Erdogan outlined in his contribution about what work the committee has done, because as we know we have still got a pandemic declaration in place, and what this committee found was that the orders were very confusing for so many—for aged care facilities, for general healthcare facilities and importantly for the general community. The orders were, as I said, difficult to interpret, and that is what the committee found.
The committee also found that there were significant issues around the mental health impacts on Victorians. We heard evidence from a number of representatives from this sector who all said there was an increase in demand, and that increase in demand was profound through the ongoing lockdowns. Of course Victoria has had the harshest restrictions with the worst outcomes—more deaths than anywhere else in Australia—and those mental health impacts for so many Victorians, especially young people, are still very, very significant. They will run for years to come.
We made a series of recommendations in our minority report—the Liberals and Nationals minority report—which found that the mental health impacts were very significant and that the restrictions and lockdowns have led to significant delays in elective surgery. We know the elective surgery waitlist here in Victoria is around 90 000. The government will not release those numbers; they are growing by the day, and the lockdowns, the code brown—all of these restrictions put in place—are impacting Victorians every single day. Unfortunately I do not have more time to speak on this, but I will in reports. I commend the report.
Motion agreed to.
The PRESIDENT: Members, we have special guests in the President’s gallery from BAPS. I would like to welcome the delegation led by Bhadreshdas Swami. Welcome to the Victorian Parliament. I would like to thank Mr Ondarchie for assisting with that visit. Thank you very much.
The PRESIDENT (12:04): I have a message from Ms Harriet Shing:
I hereby resign from the following committees:
• Integrity and Oversight Committee
• Pandemic Declaration Accountability and Oversight Committee.
Parliamentary Budget Office
Operational Plan 2022–23
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 23(4)(c) of the Parliamentary Budget Officer Act 2017 and following the transmission of the report on 27 June 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Parliamentary Budget Office’s Operational Plan 2022–23: Priorities and Protocols.
Responses to Performance Engagement Recommendations: Annual Status Update
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 59(5)(c) of the Audit Act 1994 and following the transmission of the report on 29 June 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Auditor-General’s report Responses to Performance Engagement Recommendations: Annual Status Update.
Annual Plan 2022–23
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 25C(4)(c) of the Ombudsman Act 1973 and following the transmission of the report on 30 June 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Ombudsman’s Annual Plan 2022–23.
Yoorrook Justice Commission
Yoorrook with Purpose: Interim Report
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 37(3)(c) of the Inquiries Act 2014 and following the transmission of the report on 4 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the interim report of the Yoorrook Justice Commission.
Investigation into Complaint Handling in the Victorian Social Housing Sector
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 25AA(4)(c) of the Ombudsman Act 1973 and following the transmission of the report on 7 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Ombudsman’s report Investigation into Complaint Handling in the Victorian Social Housing Sector.
Results of 2021 Audits: Technical and Further Education Institutes
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 59(5)(c) of the Audit Act 1994 and following the transmission of the report on 8 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Auditor-General’s report Results of 2021 Audits: Technical and Further Education Institutes.
Results of 2021 Audits: Universities
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 59(5)(c) of the Audit Act 1994 and following the transmission of the report on 8 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Auditor-General’s report Results of 2021 Audits: Universities.
Department of Premier and Cabinet
Report to Parliament on the Extension of the Pandemic Declaration
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 165AG(5) of the Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 and following the transmission of the report on 15 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Report to Parliament on the Extension of the Pandemic Declaration.
Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission
Operation Watts: Investigation into Allegations of Misuse of Electorate Office and Ministerial Office Staff and Resources for Branch Stacking and Other Party-Related Activities
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 162(12)(c) of the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission Act 2011 and section 25AA(4)(c) of the Ombudsman Act 1973 and following the transmission of the report on 20 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission and Ombudsman’s report Operation Watts: Investigation into Allegations of Misuse of Electorate Office and Ministerial Office Staff and Resources for Branch Stacking and Other Party-Related Activities.
Investigation of a Matter Referred from the Legislative Council on 9 February 2022: Part 1
The Clerk: Pursuant to section 25AA(4)(c) of the Ombudsman Act 1973 and following the transmission of the report on 28 July 2022, I lay on the table a copy of the Ombudsman’s report Investigation of a Matter Referred from the Legislative Council on 9 February 2022 Part 1.
Tabled by Clerk:
Conservation, Forests and Lands Act 1987—
Code of Practice for Bushfire Management on Public Land (2012) (amended 2022).
Variation of the Code of Practice for Bushfire Management on Public Land 2012 (No.1/2022).
Crown Land (Reserves) Act 1978—
Minister’s Order of 18 July 2022 giving approval to the granting of a licence at Alexandra Park Reserve.
Order of 18 May 2022 giving approval to the granting of a licence at Yarra Valley Parklands.
Orders of 1 July 2022 giving approval to the granting of leases and licences at Albert Park (1) and (2).
Members of Parliament (Standards) Act 1978—Register of Interests—Return submitted by a Member of the Legislative Council—Primary Return, 21 July 2022 (Ordered to be published).
Planning and Environment Act 1987—Notices of Approval of the following amendments to planning schemes—
Bayside Planning Scheme—Amendment C190.
Boroondara Planning Scheme—Amendments C313, C337, C366 and C384.
Casey Planning Scheme—Amendments C273 and C290.
Colac Otway Planning Scheme—Amendment C118.
Corangamite and Macedon Ranges Planning Schemes—Amendment GC201.
Glen Eira Planning Scheme—Amendment C204.
Golden Plains Planning Scheme—Amendment C92.
Greater Dandenong Planning Scheme—Amendment C234.
Greater Geelong Planning Scheme—Amendment C417.
Kingston Planning Scheme—Amendments C200 and C201.
Mansfield Planning Scheme—Amendment C44.
Melbourne Planning Scheme—Amendments C380, C396, C407, C421, C429 and C430.
Melton Planning Scheme—Amendment C229.
Mildura Planning Scheme—Amendment C106.
Mornington Peninsula Planning Scheme—Amendments C269 and C275.
Moyne Planning Scheme—Amendment C76.
Nillumbik Planning Scheme—Amendments C118 and C138.
Port Phillip Planning Scheme—Amendment C205.
Stonnington Planning Scheme—Amendment C321.
Surf Coast Planning Scheme—Amendments C134 and C139.
Victoria Planning Provisions—Amendments VC213, VC217 and VC230.
Whitehorse Planning Scheme—Amendments C222.
Whittlesea Planning Scheme—Amendment C247.
Wyndham Planning Scheme—Amendment C261.
Yarra Planning Scheme—Amendments C263 and C300.
Yarra Ranges Planning Scheme—Amendments C200 and C209.
Statutory Rules under the following Acts of Parliament—
Borrowing and Investment Powers Act 1987—No. 52.
Building Act 1993—No. 50.
Criminal Procedure Act 2009—No. 57.
Electricity Industry Act 2000—No. 55.
Firearms Act 1996—No. 58.
Gas Industry Act 2001—No. 56.
Magistrates’ Court Act 1989—No. 54.
Mental Health Act 2014—No. 46.
Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004—No. 53.
Road Safety Act 1986—Nos. 47 and 51.
Spent Convictions Act 2021—No. 49.
Subordinate Legislation Act 1994—No. 45.
Water Act 1989—No. 48.
Subordinate Legislation Act 1994—
Documents under section 15 in relation to—
Order approving the Communicating occupational health and safety across languages compliance code, of 4 July 2022, under the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004.
Rail Safety National Law National Regulations (Fees and FOI) Amendment Regulations 2022, under section 12 of the Rail Safety National Law Application Act 2013.
Statutory Rule Nos. 43, 45, 46, 47, 50, 51, 53 and 54.
Legislative Instruments and related documents under section 16B in respect of—
Declaration of a Discount Factor of 24 June 2022, under the Victorian Energy Efficiency Target Act 2007.
Determination of Gaming Machine Entitlement Allocation and Transfer Rules of 7 July 2022, under the Gambling Regulation Act 2003.
Ministerial Direction of 6 July 2022, under section 4.8A.2 the Gaming Regulation Act 2003.
Ministerial Order No. 1387—Order Amending Ministerial Orders 1038 and 1039—School Council Employees and Teaching Service (Vaccination Requirements for Specialist School Facilities) of 20 July 2022 under the Education and Training Reform Act 2006.
Notice of Guidelines for Assessing Fitness to Drive of 21 June 2022, under the Road Safety Act 1986.
Order for Amendment of the Trading Rules for Declared Water Systems (Revised Limit on Allocation Trade from Goulburn or Broken or Campaspe or Loddon, to Murray or Interstate—12F4) of 25 June 2022, under the Water Act 1989.
Order in Council Declaring Certain Motor Vehicles Not to Be Motor Vehicles of 30 June 2022, under the Road Safety Act 1986.
Victorian Independent Remuneration Tribunal and Improving Parliamentary Standards Act 2019—Members of Parliament (Victoria) Annual Adjustment Determination 2022, under section 26 of the Act.
Victorian Inspectorate—Reports on controlled operations records and reports, 2020–21 for—
Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, under section 74P of the Wildlife Act 1975.
Game Management Authority, under section 74P of the Wildlife Act 1975.
Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission, under section 39 of the Crimes (Controlled Operations) Act 2004.
Victorian Fisheries Authority, under section 131T of the Fisheries Act 1995.
Victoria Police, under section 39 of the Crimes (Controlled Operations) Act 2004.
Wrongs Act 1958—Notice of scale of fees and costs for referrals of medical questions to medical panels under Part VBA.
Proclamations of the Governor in Council fixing operative dates in respect of the following acts:
Alpine Resorts Legislation Amendment Act 2022—Whole Act—1 October 2022 (Gazette No. S371, 26 July 2022).
Justice Legislation Amendment Act 2022—section 7—19 July 2022 (Gazette No. S365, 19 July 2022).
Proclamations of the Lieutenant-Governor in Council fixing operative dates in respect of the following acts:
Casino and Liquor Legislation Amendment Act 2022—Whole Act (other than sections 8 and 18)—1 July 2022, section 18—25 August 2022 and section 8—1 October 2022 (Gazette No. S336, 30 June 2022).
Justice Legislation Amendment (Fines Reform and Other Matters) Act 2022—Division 2 of Part 2 (other than sections 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 37A, 38, 39, 40, 41 and 42), section 74 and section 82—18 July 2022 (Gazette No. S346, 5 July 2022).
Legal Profession Uniform Law Application Amendment Act 2019—Remaining provisions—1 July 2022 (Gazette No. S336, 30 June 2022).
Road Safety Legislation Amendment Act 2022—Parts 1, 3 and 4 and sections 18 and 19—6 July 2022 (Gazette No. S346, 5 July 2022).
Production of documents
The Clerk: I lay on the table a letter from the Attorney-General dated 5 July 2022 in response to the resolution of the Council of 8 June 2022 on the motion of Mr Davis relating to InsightsVictoria. The letter states that there was insufficient time to respond and that a final response to the order will be provided as soon as possible.
The Clerk: Further, I lay on the table a letter from the Attorney-General dated 5 July 2022 in response to the resolution of the Council of 8 June 2022 on the motion of Mr Davis relating to the interdepartmental WorkSafe steering committee. The letter states that there was insufficient time to respond and that a final response to the order will be provided as soon as possible.