Private members’ business

Crimes (Appeal and Review) Amendment (Double Jeopardy) Bill 2018 (Mr Shoebridge, The Greens)

This is the second bill introduced during this Parliament by Mr Shoebridge with the object of extending the exception to the rule against double jeopardy. The first bill introduced in 2016 was negatived at the second reading stage. The transcript of that debate can be read in Hansard.

The introduction of this bill by Mr Shoebridge follows the NSW Court of Criminal Appeal decision that, in a case concerning the murder of three Aboriginal children in Bowraville almost 20 years ago, there was no “fresh and compelling evidence” that could be examined under the existing provisions of the Crimes (Appeal and Review) Act 2001 for a retrial of an acquitted person.

The bill introduced yesterday seeks to amend the Crimes (Appeal and Review) Act 2001 to extend an exception to the rule against double jeopardy in relation to an acquitted person where previously inadmissible evidence becomes admissible. The Bill provides that, when the Director of Public Prosecutions applies to the Court of Criminal Appeal for an order that an acquitted person be retried for an offence punishable by life imprisonment, evidence against the acquitted person is to be considered fresh if it was inadmissible in the proceedings in which the person was acquitted but, as a result of a substantive legislative change in the law of evidence since the acquittal, would now be admissible if the acquitted person were to be retried.

The Bill also amends the Crimes (Appeal and Review) Act 2001 to allow for a second application for the retrial of an acquitted person to be made in exceptional circumstances, a provision which was not in the 2016 bill.

The introduction of the bill was the first item of business considered after formalities. A number of relatives and supporters of the Bowraville families were present in the public gallery to witness Mr Shoebridge give his second reading speech, (see Hansard for a transcript of his speech). At the conclusion of the second reading speech, debate was adjourned for five calendar days.

Marine Parks Amendment (Moratorium) Bill 2018 (Mr Borsak, Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party)

The bill seeks to impose a 10-year moratorium on the creation of any new marine parks under the Marine Estate Management Act 2014. In 2011, during the previous parliament, the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party introduced a bill which passed both Houses and became law which provided for a five-year moratorium on the creation of new marine parks or the alteration or creation of sanctuary zones within existing marine parks.

In his second reading speech Mr Borsak argued that the moratorium is required in order to provide sufficient time for an adequate scientific assessment to identify the major threats to the marine environment and how they should be addressed. Mr Field from The Greens made a number of interjections as he disputed elements of Mr Borsak’s speech and was suspended from the Chamber after being called to order three times (see Hansard for a transcript of the proceedings). At the conclusion of the second reading speech, debate was adjourned for five calendar days.

Government infrastructure projects (Ms Lynda Voltz, Australian Labor Party)

The motion states that a number of current government infrastructure projects are overdue and more expensive than initially promised, including WestConnex, CBD Light Rail, a Stadium Strategy and the Northern Beaches B-Line. The motion also calls on the Government to immediately release the full report by Infrastructure NSW into the CBD Light Rail.

Members who spoke in the debate offered differing views on the success of the current infrastructure projects. Opposition members criticised the Government on the cost and delivery of the projects, while Government members argued that the projects were progressing well and would deliver benefits to the State (see Hansard for a transcript of the debate). After contributions from seven members, debate was adjourned until the next sitting day.

ANZAC DAY 2018 (Mr Franklin, The Nationals)

The motion noted that Anzac Day is the most important national day of commemoration, and that 2014-2018 is the Centenary of ANZAC. The motion acknowledged and honoured the original ANZACs and the men and women who have served over the past century. The motion recognises the State’s commemorative events, and encourages future generations to continue remembrance traditions.

Debate on the motion, which had been adjourned on 7 June, resumed with a contribution from Mr Martin. Mr Franklin then spoke in reply, and the motion was agreed to on the voices.

Agricultural Shows in New South Wales (Mrs Taylor, The Nationals)

The motion acknowledges the role of agricultural shows in promoting and protecting the country’s pastoral, agricultural, horticultural and industrial resources.

The motion had previously been debated on 15 March and on 16 August. On Thursday, debate resumed after Questions. After contributions from five members, debate was interrupted according to sessional order to allow the Minister to move the adjournment motion (see Hansard for a transcript of the debate).

Adjournment debate

The following members spoke to the adjournment debate:

  • Mr Field – Marine Parks
  • Mr Clarke – Infrastructure Projects
  • Ms Voltz – Combat Sport
  • Mr Green – Special Religious Education
  • Mr Colless – Landcare
  • Mrs Houssos – Share Economy Work Practices / Baby Formula

See Hansard for details of the debate.