The Infrastructure Australia Bill 2008 (Cth) was
introduced into the House of Representatives and received its
second reading speech on 21 February 2008.
Once enacted the Bill will establish an independent
statutory authority called Infrastructure Australia to develop
a strategic blueprint for the nation's infrastructure
What Will Be The Functions Of Infrastructure
Infrastructure Australia's primary functions will be
to provide strategic policy advice to all levels of government,
investors and owners of infrastructure assets and services.
This will include advice on:
Australia's current and future infrastructure
policy issues that may impact on infrastructure;
suggested reforms; and
mechanisms for financing infrastructure.
Special importance is given to what is termed nationally
significant infrastructure. According to the explanatory
memorandum, this includes transport, energy, communications and
water projects, all sectors that are likely to have a
significant impact on helping the country sustain long-term
Creation Of Infrastructure Priority Lists And Commonwealth
It is proposed that Infrastructure Australia will also audit
the adequacy, capacity and condition of nationally significant
Infrastructure Australia will develop lists called
Infrastructure Priority Lists that will prioritise
Australia's infrastructure needs. It will review
Commonwealth funding to ensure that it is consistent with the
Infrastructure Priority Lists.
Who Will Be Appointed To Infrastructure Australia?
The Infrastructure Australia Board will consist of twelve
members appointed by the Federal Infrastructure Minister
Anthony Albanese Minister who announced today that Sir Rod
Eddington will be the Chair of Infrastructure Australia.
All members will be appointed for terms not exceeding three
years. The Board will compromise of five members from the
private sector (including Sir Rod Eddington), three from the
Commonwealth, three from the states and one other from local
This will ensure all interests groups are given a voice on
the national approach to infrastructure delivery.
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The Freedom of Information Amendment Bill 2007 (Bill) was introduced and had its first Reading Speech on 20 November 2007. FOI officers will need to be aware of the changes proposed by the Bill, and monitor its progress through Parliament.
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