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Thursday, 20 August 2009

Legislation Watch: Justice Legislation Further Amendment Bill 2009

The Justice Legislation Further Amendment Bill 2009 had its second reading moved in Parliament's Assembly last week.



It'll be back before the House in a week's time, and it's unlikely to encounter any difficulty passing. The Bill's human rights compatibility statement can be found in Hansard here.



It's omnibus legislation, designed to provide a nip-and-tuck to a variety of existing Acts, including:
  • new provisions in the Drugs, Poisons and Controlled Substances Act 1986 relating to the handling and recording of precursor chemicals, intended to discourage their diversion into the manufacture of illicit drugs;
  • the Family Violence Protection Act 2008 and Stalking Intervention Orders Act 2008 will provide that the procedure for surrendered firearms and weapons will be the same as it is for seized firearms and weapons;
  • there will be increased obligations and additional provisions for subjects of orders made under the Sex Offenders Registration Act 2004, such as the obligation to register passport details and internet addresses; and
  • provisions inserted into the Road Safety Act 1986 to interpret all references to automatic detection devices as their new name, road safety cameras. All speed measuring devices will now be referred to as one of two categories, either a road safety camera or a speed detector.
The Explanatory Memorandum for this amending legislation can be found here. The precursor chemicals provisions will come in on the day the Act receives Royal Assent. The remaining provisions will come into force on a day yet to be proclaimed, or at any rate by 31 May 2010, except for the changes to the Road Safety Act, which will be implemented at the same time as s 30 of the Road Legislation Amendment Act 2009 (though this Act was passed in June, s 30 has not yet commenced).



It would seem that the intent of Clauses 61 and 62 is to prevent motorists mounting challenge to the automatic enforcement system based on the changes to the relevant terminology. The Explantory Memorandum states,

Clause 61 inserts new sections 103U, 103V, 103X, 103Y and 103Z into the Road Safety Act 1986. These provisions operate to ensure that—



• no matter when evidence is indicated or determined by any such device, and regardless of the terminology used in respect of the device, the appropriate provisions will apply to that evidence; and



• no matter when a certificate is issued in relation to any such device, and regardless of the terminology used in respect of the device, the appropriate provisions will apply to that certificate.

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