MERCURY
LEGISLATION to create an Integrity Commission will be tabled before Christmas.

The Joint Select Committee on Ethical Conduct released its final 200 page report today.

It recommends the creation of a Tasmanian Integrity Commission with strong investigative powers with primary objectives to:

• Improve the standard of governance in Tasmania.

• Enhance public trust that misconduct, including corrupt conduct, will be investigated and brought to account.

• Elevate the quality of governance by adopting a strong, symbolic and educative role.

The new body would also have the power to review Tasmania Police investigations into allegations of criminal misconduct that the Director of Public Prosecutions had chosen not to prosecute.

Attorney-General Lara Giddings said her Government was committed to implementing an independent body and would table legislation before the end of the year.

“Experience shows that setting up bodies such as the Ombudsman’s office or Legal Practitioners Board can take a number of months from when the legislation is passed but will do all we can to ensure that it is established in a timely manner,” Ms Giddings said.

Ms Giddings said she would examine the committee’s remaining 32 recommendations but she did not commit to implementing them.

Other recommendations include:

• That an independent inquiry be conducted into whether or not there should be an increase of the number of members elected to the Legislative Council and House of Assembly.

• strengthening of the parliamentary disclosure of interests register to include interests of politicians’ immediate families.

• That the Police Service Act 2003 to ensure that the Executive cannot direct Tasmania Police on operational matters.

• Investigation into public funding for election campaigns.

Read more here

The Parties: What they reckon (Labor, Lib, Greens links at the bottom of links…)