Premier Carmen Lawrence today introduced legislation into State Parliament to begin the major reform process recommended by the Royal Commission into Commercial Activities of Government and Other Matters.
The legislation sets up the Commission on Government to inquire into matters identified by the Royal Commission and report its recommendations to Parliament.
In introducing the legislation, the Premier also tabled a document detailing the State Government's approach to all the recommendations contained in Part Two of the Royal Commission's report.
The Premier said the legislation and the report signalled the beginning of a new era of improvements to Government and public administration in Western Australia.
"The Commission on Government will be independent of Government and incorporate the checks and balances recommended by the Royal Commission," Dr Lawrence said.
"This is because the Government, the Opposition and the Parliament could be seen to have vested interests in the outcome of the Commission's deliberations."
The Premier said the Commission would comprise a full-time chairperson and four part-time commissioners.
Their appointments would be made in consultation with the Opposition parties.
"It will be open to the Commission on Government to make interim reports and, in particular, to report within nine months of being established on the electoral systems in the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council.
"This will allow time for the implementation of the Commission's recommendations before the electoral redistribution due in 1994."
Among other things the Commission would inquire into:
· secrecy laws;
· standards of conduct for public officials;
· whistleblower protection;
· political finance;
· parliamentary procedures.
Dr Lawrence said she expected a great deal of public interest in the deliberations and report of the Commission on Government.
The Auditor General had agreed to receive submissions to the Commission between now and its establishment expected early next year.