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Parliamentary update: 22 February to 24 February

Queensland Parliament sat from 22 February to 24 February 2022.

Bills introduced

  • Nature Conservation and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2022
  • Racing Integrity Amendment Bill 2022
  • Public Health and Other Legislation (Extension of Expiring Provisions) Amendment Bill 2022.

Nature Conservation and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2022

The Nature Conservation and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2022 was introduced on 24 February 2022 by the Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef and Minister for Science and Youth Affairs, Meaghan Scanlon MP.

The objectives of the Bill are to:

  • Provide a 20-year extension to allow beekeeping on specified national parks to continue until 31 December 2044
  • Enhance the Department of Environment and Science’s capacity to respond to misconduct on Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service managed areas
  • Relocate powers of officers to seize and deal with things that are seized, administrative provisions relating to approved forms, and internal and external reviews of decisions from subordinate legislation into the Nature Conservation Act 1992 (NCA) to reflect current drafting practices
  • Make amendments to Wet Tropics World Heritage Protection and Management Act 1993 (Wet Tropics Act) to reflect National Cabinet changes to intergovernmental arrangements between the State and the Commonwealth following a review of the former Council of Australian Governments’ Councils and Ministerial Forums
  • Simplify the process for consequential amendments to the Wet Tropics Management Plan 1998
  • Correct minor errors in the NCA and the Wet Tropics Act.

The Bill amends:

  • Forestry Act 1959
  • Marine Parks Act 2004
  • Nature Conservation Act 1992
  • Nature Conservation (Animals) Regulation 2020
  • Nature Conservation (Plants) Regulation 2020
  • Nature Conservation (Protected Areas Management) Regulation 2017
  • Recreation Areas Management Act 2006
  • State Penalties Enforcement Regulation 2014
  • Wet Tropics World Heritage Protection and Management Act 1993

The Bill has been referred to the parliamentary State Development and Regional Industries Committee for inquiry.

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Racing Integrity Amendment Bill 2022

The Racing Integrity Amendment Bill 2022 was introduced on 24 February 2022 by the Minister for Education, Minister for Industrial Relations and Minister for Racing, the Honourable Grace Grace MP.

The main objectives of the Bill are to reform the review processes for decisions made by stewards under the rules of racing by:

  • Replacing the current internal and external review processes for decisions made by racing stewards under the rules of racing with review by an independent panel
  • Ensuring reviews are finalised within a reasonable timeframe
  • Reducing serious welfare, human safety or integrity risks from being stayed pending hearing of an appeal by the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal.

Another objective of the Bill is to allow for the publication of stewards’ reports and other reports online.

As the Bill is currently drafted, it only amends the Racing Integrity Act 2016.

The Bill has been referred to the Education, Employment and Training Committee for inquiry. The report to the Bill is due to be tabled by 8 April 2022. See more information on the committee inquiry. Submissions close at 9:00 am on Friday 11 March 2022.

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Public Health and Other Legislation (Extension of Expiring Provisions) Amendment Bill 2022

The Public Health and Other Legislation (Extension of Expiring Provisions) Amendment Bill 2022 was introduced on 22 February 2022 by the Minister for Health and Ambulance Services, Yvette D’Ath.

The objectives of the Bill are to:

  • Further extend the operation of essential public health measures implemented to facilitate Queensland’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including to:
    • increase certain powers for emergency officers and the Chief Health Officer to limit, or respond to, the spread of COVID-19 in Queensland, including by issuing directions to require physical distancing, restrict movement and gatherings, require people to quarantine or self-isolate and implement other containment measures
    • authorise the sharing of confidential information for contact tracing
    • increase the period for which a regulation may extend a declared public health emergency from seven to 90 days.
  • Amend the Acts Interpretation Act 1954 to include the new defined term ‘COVID-19 public health legislation expiry day’, as the term is used in a number of Acts extending COVID-19 public health measures. The ‘COVID-19 public health legislation expiry day’ is defined by reference to section 315 of the Public Health Act 2005, that is, to mean the day the COVID-19 emergency ends under section 324(1) of the Public Health Act or 31 October 2022, whichever is earlier
  • Extend amendments to the Corrective Services Act 2006Disaster Management Act 2003 and Mental Health Act 2016 to support the public health response
  • Continue certain savings and transitional provisions in the COVID-19 Emergency Response Act 2020 including the:
    • operation of the temporary Queensland Small Business Commissioner until a permanent commissioner has been appointed
    • continued operation of retail leasing dispute measures under the Retail Shop Leases and Other Commercial Leases (COVID-19 Emergency Response) Regulation 2020.

The Bill amends:

  • Acts Interpretation Act 1954
  • Corrective Services Act 2006
  • Corrective Services and Other Legislation Amendment Act 2020
  • COVID-19 Emergency Response Act 2020
  • Disaster Management Act 2003
  • Justice and Other Legislation (COVID-19 Emergency Response) Amendment Act 2020
  • Mental Health Act 2016
  • Public Health Act 2005
  • Public Health and Other Legislation (Extension of Expiring Provisions) Amendment Act 2021
  • Public Health and Other Legislation (Public Health Emergency) Amendment Act 2020

The Bill has been referred to the parliamentary Community Support and Services Committee for inquiry. The report to the Bill is due to be tabled by 25 March 2022. See more information on the committee inquiry. The closing date for written submissions is 12pm on Friday 4 March 2022.

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Legislation passed this Parliament

The following legislation was passed by the Legislative Assembly:

  • Health and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2021
  • Appropriation (Parliament) Bill (No.2) 2021
  • Appropriation Bill (No.2) 2021

Health and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2021

The Health and Other Legislation Amendment Bill 2021 was introduced into the Legislative Assembly on 1 December 2021 by the Minister for Health and Ambulance Services, Yvette D’Ath, and referred to the State Development and Regional Industries Committee for detailed consideration.

The Bill passed was passed with amendment on 24 February 2022.

The Bill amends:

  • Ambulance Service Act 1991

The amendments are designed to ensure the framework for managing confidential information is robust, clear and aligned with the Hospital and Health Boards Act 2011 and to remove the requirement for the Queensland Ambulance Service Commissioner to be no older than 65 years of age.

  • Environmental Protection Act 1994

The Bill provides that development or use of premises that cause environmental nuisance is not an offence under the Act, to the extent it has been assessed and is explicitly regulated by a requirement of an infrastructure designation by the Planning Minister under the Planning Act 2016.

  • Hospital and Health Boards Act 2011

The amendments enable allied health professionals to access ‘The Viewer’ (an online Health Provider Portal) to achieve better health outcomes for patients, and allow designated persons and prescribed health professionals to disclose confidential information to a person performing functions under the Mental Health Act 2016.

  • Mental Health Act 2016

The Bill makes a number of amendments to the Mental Health Act 2016 which seek to clarify and improve the operation of key provisions in the Act relating to, amongst other things, disputed facts in the Mental Health Court, electroconvulsive therapy and interstate transfer of patients.

  • Public Health (Infection Control for Personal Appearance Services) Act 2003

The Bill seeks to improve the operation of the Act in relation to the restoration and renewal of business licences.

  • Radiation Safety Act 1999

The Bill amends the Radiation Safety Act 1999 to remove the requirement to prescribe identity verification documents by regulation for particular applications, with identity requirements to be included in departmental policies informed by the National Identity Proofing Guidelines.

  • Termination of Pregnancy Act 2018 and the Criminal Code Act 1899

The Bill makes amendments to allow students registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law, who are undertaking a clinical placement with a health service, to assist in a termination of pregnancy.

  • Transplantation and Anatomy Act 1979

The Bill excludes human milk from the definition of tissue in the Act to ensure sick and pre-term infants can be efficiently provided donated human milk to prevent or treat serious health conditions.

  • Corrective Services Act 2006 and Water Support (Safety and Reliability) Act 2008

The Bill makes consequential amendments to remove references to the repealed Health Act 1937 and the Pest Management Act 2001 following the commencement of the Medicines and Poisons Act 2019.

Following the committee inquiry, the Bill was amended to include the Territory of Norfolk Island as a State under the Mental Health Act 2016 and the Mental Health Regulation 2017. The purpose of these amendments were to ensure that involuntary mental health patients on Norfolk Island can lawfully be transferred to and treated in Queensland.

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Appropriation (Parliament) Bill (No.2) 2021

The Appropriation (Parliament) Bill (No.2) 2021 was introduced in the Legislative Assembly on 15 September 2021 by the Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment, Cameron Dick, and referred to the Economics and Governance Committee for detailed consideration.

The Bill was passed without amendment on 23 February 2022.

The Bill authorises the Treasurer to pay an amount from the consolidated fund for the Legislative Assembly and parliamentary service for the financial year starting 1 July 2020. The objective of the Bill is to secure supplementary appropriation for the 2020-21 financial year for unforeseen expenditure for the Legislative Assembly and Parliamentary Service.

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Appropriation Bill (No.2) 2021

The Appropriation Bill (No.2) 2021 was introduced on 15 September 2021 by the Treasurer and Minister for Investment, Cameron Dick, and referred to the parliamentary Economics and Governance Committee for detailed consideration.

The Bill was passed without amendment on 23 February 2022.

The Bill authorises the Treasurer to pay amounts from the consolidated fund for particular departments for the financial year starting 1 July 2020. The objective of the Bill is to secure parliamentary approval for unforeseen expenditure in the 2020-21 financial year.

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Adjournments

The following Bills were adjourned:

  • Small Business Commissioner Bill 2021
  • Environmental and Other Legislation (Reversal of Great Barrier Reef Protection Measures) Amendment Bill 2021

Small Business Commissioner Bill 2021

The second reading of the Small Business Commissioner Bill 2021 was adjourned on 24 February 2022.

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Environmental and Other Legislation (Reversal of Great Barrier Reef Protection Measures) Amendment Bill 2021

The second reading of the Environmental and Other Legislation (Reversal of Great Barrier Reef Protection Measures) Amendment Bill 2021 was adjourned on 22 February 2022.

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Subordinate legislation

Subordinate Queensland Legislation notified in 2021 is available online. Subordinate Queensland Legislation notified in 2022 is also available online.

Subordinate Legislation notified on the Queensland Legislation website from 3 December 2021 to 25 January 2022.

Queensland Government Gazette

The Queensland Government Gazettes for 2022 are available online.

Parliamentary sitting dates

As indicated on the parliamentary website, the Queensland Parliament is currently scheduled to next sit on 15 to 17 March 2022.

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