On 28 October 2015 the Data Sharing (Government Sector) Bill 2015 (Bill) was introduced into New South Wales Parliament.
The objective of the Bill is to enable government sector agencies to share data with the Data Analytic Centre (DAC) within the Department of Finance, Services and Innovation or other government agencies for certain purposes which include allowing the government to carry out data analytics for the purposes of identifying issues and solutions to better develop government policy, program management and service planning and delivery by government agencies.
The Bill ensures that there are certain safeguards in relation to the handling of shared data built to the Bill and also provides that where data is shared that includes personal information or health information then the relevant privacy legislation being either the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1988 or the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002 continue to apply.
The Act can be seen as a positive step in encouraging data sharing subject to existing regulations and additional safeguards. It allows sharing with the DAC as well as other government sector agencies for similar purposes and it makes provision for the minister to direct a government sector agency to share data. The Bill has received statements of support from a number of government and community figures including the NSW Privacy Commissioner
One issue it raises for government sector agencies in terms of their compliance with the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act and the agency's privacy management plan is that section 10(c) requires that an agency in its collection notice notify individuals of the "intended recipients" of their information.
If this Bill is passed then it would be expected that a reference to the DAC within the Department of Finance Services and Innovation should be added to all collection notices and should be noted in the privacy management plan.
One issue this Bill raises is whether there is already some level of inter-departmental data sharing that is not appropriately acknowledged in collection notices and this is something that government sector agencies would be well advised to consider and to update both their collection notices and their privacy management plans.
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In the media
NSW Privacy Commissioner calls for statutory remedies
for serious invasions of privacy
Dr Coombs' written submission, available on the Parliament of NSW website, supports the recommendations for the development of a statutory cause of action made by Law Reform Commission reports, produced by New South Wales, Victoria and at the Commonwealth level (30 October 2015). More...
Strong voice for victims
Eleven members have been appointed to the Victims Advisory Board. The advice and counsel of the Board will help shape services to ensure they are giving victims the right kinds of support when they need it, according to the Attorney-General (26 October 2015). More... More...
Stronger bail laws to protect against terror risk
The NSW Government will introduce new laws into NSW Parliament that will make it harder for people with links to terrorism to get bail. The legislation implements the amendments recommended by the Joint Commonwealth-NSW Martin Place Siege Review, the final report of the Hatzistergos Review and NSW Sentencing Council (20 October 2015). More...
60 per cent of NSW councils 'not fit':
Almost two-thirds of NSW councils have been declared "not fit" by an Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) report released and again forcefully pressed to merge by NSW Premier Mike Baird under the government's Fit for the Future campaign, with thirty days to respond (20 October 2015). More...
In practice and courts
ICAC: Public inquiry into University of Sydney ICT contractor recruitment image
Public inquiry into University of Sydney ICT contractor
The ICAC will hold a public inquiry commencing on Monday 9 November 2015 as part of an investigation it is conducting into allegations concerning information communication technology (ICT) contractor recruitment by Jason Meeth (28 October 2015). More...
IPC NSW: Personal information as a public interest
consideration under the GIPA Act
The IPC reminds public sector agencies of the Information Commissioner's "Guideline 4: Personal information as a public interest consideration under the GIPA Act" Personal information can be both a consideration in favour of disclosure, and a consideration against disclosure (20 October 2015). More...
NSW Custody Statistics to Sept 2015, the release date is 02 November 2015.
JUDCOM Sentencing Bench Book: Update 32
Includes Procedural fairness; Fact finding at sentence; Setting terms of imprisonment; Standard non-parole period offences; Objective factors (26 October 2015). More...
NSW Parliament - This month in committees
Inquiries receiving submissions
Published – articles, papers, reports
Supreme Court Chief Justice's Speech
The Supreme Court has made available The History of Equity (27 October 2015), the Francis Forbes Society Australian Legal History Tutorial delivered by Chief Justice Bathurst.
The Greater Sydney Commission
NSW Parliamentary Research Service October 2015 e-brief 20/2015. This e-brief looks at the background to the proposed Greater Sydney Commission and discusses its proposed structure and functions in light of stakeholder comments and arrangements in place for comparable bodies, notably Melbourne's Metropolitan Planning Authority. More...
Violent and property crime trends: local and
NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research; Paul Nelson, 19 October 2015. Compares crime trends in New South Wales (NSW), Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the USA, England and Wales, and Scandinavia. More...
Community Action for Windsor Bridge Inc v NSW Roads
and Maritime Services & anor 
JUDICIAL REVIEW – application for declaration that decision of Minister for Planning and Infrastructure to approve destruction of Windsor Bridge and construction of new bridge invalid – whether decision void for lack of certainty and finality – whether Minister's decision defers determination of material modifications so as not to amount to "approval" – validity on grounds of finality and certainty to be determined by construction of statute vesting decision-making power – approval under (NSW) Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979, Pt 5.1 – permissibility of degree of generality – requirement that outer limits of approval are discernible – relevance of complexity and scope of project under approval – whether outer parameters of approval defined – whether Minister failed to take into account relevant considerations – whether cultural heritage was mandatory relevant consideration – whether Minister failed to give proper consideration to cultural heritage – severance of void condition – whether severance of impugned condition, if invalid, would result in approval operating substantially differently – Wednesbury unreasonableness – application of doctrine in planning context – whether inclusion of impugned condition manifestly unreasonable. More...
Neary v Commissioner of Police, NSW Police
Force  NSWCATAD 223
GOVERNMENT INFORMATION – Applications lodged out of time – Whether applications should be accepted out of time – Whether reasonable excuse for delay. More...
Charles Gauci v Commission for Fair Trading
NSW  NSWCATAD 218
GOVERNMENT Information – Legal professional privilege – Legal advice – intention to obtain legal advice – conclusive presumption of overriding public interest against disclosure. More...
Eyes v Wyong Shire Council
 NSWCATAD 214
Government Information (Public Access) - whether public interest considerations against disclosure outweigh the public interest considerations favouring disclosure - whether information already disclosed. More...
Regulations and other miscellaneous instruments
Administrative Arrangements (Administration of Acts—Amendment No 4) Order 2015 (2015-658) — published LW 30 October 2015
Administrative Arrangements (Administrative Changes—Liquor and Gaming) Order 2015 (2015-659) — published LW 30 October 2015
Child Protection (Working with Children) Amendment (Exemption from Notification) Regulation 2015 (2015-656) — published LW 29 October 2015
Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Amendment (Cessation of Authorisation) Regulation 2015 (2015-661) — published LW 30 October 2015
Crimes (Administration of Sentences) Amendment (National Security Interest Inmates) Regulation 2015 (2015-662) — published LW 30 October 2015
Gaming Machines Amendment (Hardship Gaming Machines) Regulation 2015 (2015-663) — published LW 30 October 2015
Bills introduced Government – 30 October
Data Sharing (Government Sector) Bill 2015 - The objects of this Bill are:
-to enable government sector agencies to agree to share government sector data with the Data Analytics Centre in the Department of Finance, Services and Innovation
or other government sector agencies for certain purposes; and to
- specify safeguards (including in relation to the collection, use, disclosure, protection,
keeping, retention or disposal of health information or personal information of individuals.
Firearms and Weapons Prohibition Legislation Amendment Bill
The Bill creates a new offence for the possession of a stolen firearm, which will carry a maximum penalty of 14 years' imprisonment
Bills revised following amendment in Committee – week ending 30 October 2015
Statute Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill (No 2) 2015
According to the explanatory note, the objectives of the Bill are to: make minor amendments to various Acts; amend certain other Acts and instruments for the purpose of effecting statute law revision; make minor amendments to various Acts and instruments consequent on the enactment of the Government Sector Employment Act 2013 No. 40 (NSW).
Bills passed by both Houses of Parliament –week ending 30 October 2015
Bail Amendment Bill 2015
Specifically, the Bill would amend the principal Act to: provide new bail conditions that may be imposed by courts in s. 28 (Bail condition can impose accommodation requirements); confer the power to make a bail decision for an offence, on certain police officers in specific circumstances.
Criminal Procedure Amendment (Child Sexual Offence Evidence Pilot)
According to the explanatory note, the objective of the Bill is to give effect to a pilot scheme that augments provisions in the principal Act relating to the giving of evidence in criminal proceedings by certain vulnerable persons in the form of recordings of previous representations and by closed-circuit television or similar technology in court proceedings.
Occupational Licensing National Law Repeal Bill 2015
The objective of the Bill, which is cognate with the Regulatory Reform and Other Legislative Repeals Bill 2015 (NSW), is to terminate the involvement of NSW in a scheme to replace state- and territory-based licensing arrangements with a national occupational licensing scheme
Bills introduced Government – 23 October 2015
Courts and Other Justice Portfolio Legislation Amendment Bill
Legislative Assembly 20/10/2015 Introduced and read a first time second reading, debate adjorned. This Bill is for an Act to amend various Acts relating to courts and other Justice portfolio matters. According to the explanatory notes, the objectives of the Bill are to make amendments specifically to to:
Civil Procedure Act 2005 No. 28 (NSW) in relation to payments attached to garnishee orders, persons under legal incapacity, judgment debts and interest paid on orders for costs;
Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 No. 92 (NSW) to make it clear that a court may consider work arrangements in another State or Territory when considering whether to make a community service order with respect to an offender;
Criminal Procedure Act 1986 No. 209 (NSW) to clarify provisions relating to the commencement of proceedings for offences (including common law offences) by police officers and public officers;
Evidence (Audio and Audio Visual Links) Act 1998 No. 105 (NSW) to make it clear that all parties' interests must be considered before the court makes a direction that a person may give evidence or make a submission by audio link or audio visual link;
Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 No. 52 (NSW) to provide that certain information held by the State Parole Authority is information for which there is a conclusive presumption against disclosure
Greater Sydney Commission Bill 2015
Legislative Assembly 27/10/2015 Second reading debate continued and adjourned; Legislative Assembly 22/10/2015 Introduced and read a first time. This Bill is for an Act to constitute and confer functions on the Greater Sydney Commission and to provide for the constitution of planning panels for the Greater Sydney Region
The objects of this Bill are to amend the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (i) to allow public sector agencies to disclose personal information to interstate persons or bodies or Commonwealth agencies for certain purposes, and to collect, use and disclose personal information for certain research purposes, based on existing exemptions applicable to health information under the Health Records and Information Privacy Act 2002.
Bills passed by both Houses of Parliament – 23 October 2015
Bills assented to
Fair Trading Amendment (Information About Complaints) Act 2015 No 30 — Assented to 22 October 2015.
Residential Tenancies and Housing Legislation Amendment (Public Housing—Antisocial Behaviour) Act 2015 No 34 — Assented to 22 October 2015.
For the full text of Bills, and details on the passage of Bills, see Bills.
This publication does not deal with every important topic or change in law and is not intended to be relied upon as a substitute for legal or other advice that may be relevant to the reader's specific circumstances. If you have found this publication of interest and would like to know more or wish to obtain legal advice relevant to your circumstances please contact one of the named individuals listed.