Summaries of Ministers' discretionary powers

Simon made this Freedom of Information request to Department of Parliamentary Services

Department of Parliamentary Services did not have the information requested.

From: Simon

Dear Department of Parliamentary Services,

I'm seeking access to documents listing and/or summarising 'discretionary powers' currently conferred on ministers of the federal government by legislation or regulation.

This request is intended to capture documents describing powers conferred on ministers which could be described as 'discretionary' even though they might not be specifically defined as discretionary in the legislative or regulatory instrument which grants them.

Please initially treat this request as a request for administrative access. If it can't be processed in that way, please consider it as a formal request under the Freedom of Information Act.

Yours faithfully,

Simon

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From: DPS Information Requests
Department of Parliamentary Services

Dear Simon

Thank you for your email.

The Department of Parliamentary Services (DPS) is a service department, primarily responsible for maintaining and managing Parliament House, supporting the work of the Parliament and providing access to Parliament House.

As such DPS is unable to help you with your request.

We suggest that you continue to pursue this matter with the Attorney-General's Department.

Regards

DPS Information Requests

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From: Simon

Delivered

Dear DPS Information Requests,

My intention was to direct this enquiry to the Parliamentary Library which I understand to be part of DPS—is this incorrect?

My assumption was that the library or another part of the parliamentary service would likely have prepared reports with information about the various powers of ministerial discretion for the use of parliament.

The DPS does hold documents that describe and list powers of ministerial discretion, for example: http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Busi...

I am interested to know about any further documents held by the DPS on this topic.

Yours sincerely,
Simon

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From: DPS Information Requests
Department of Parliamentary Services

Dear Simon

In response to your email of today we confirm that the Parliamentary Library is a division of DPS. The Parliamentary Library provides research and information to Senators and Members in support of their parliamentary duties. All research undertaken in this role is confidential. The Library does not undertake research for members of the public but does make published research papers available on the Parliament of Australia website. These can be found by searching the website or using ParlInfo search.

Advice from the Parliamentary Library in response to your request is that the Library has not published any documents listing and/or summarising 'discretionary powers' currently conferred on ministers of the federal government by legislation or regulation.

The example (of a document that describes and lists powers of ministerial discretion) that you provide in your email relates to a Senate Committee inquiry conducted by the Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs. Senate Committees are managed by the Department of the Senate which is a separate Parliamentary Department to DPS.

We suggest that you may wish to direct any further inquiries to the Chamber Departments (being the Department of the Senate or the Department of the House of Representatives).

We hope that the above information is of assistance to you.

Regards

DPS Information Requests

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From: DPS Information Requests
Department of Parliamentary Services

Dear Simon

We are writing to advise that we inadvertently misrepresented the advice from the Parliamentary Library. Following further consultation with the Library, please accept the following amendment to the response below:

Please replace the statement:

'Advice from the Parliamentary Library in response to your request is that the Library has not published any documents listing and/or summarising 'discretionary powers' currently conferred on ministers of the federal government by legislation or regulation.' with the following:

'If the Parliamentary Library has published any documents listing and/or summarising 'discretionary powers' currently conferred on ministers of the federal government by legislation or regulation such publication will be available on the APH website.'

We will now forward a copy of our amended response in a separate email.

We apologise for any inconvenience this may have caused.

Regards

DPS Information Requests

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From: DPS Information Requests
Department of Parliamentary Services

Dear Simon

In response to your email of today we confirm that the Parliamentary Library is a division of DPS. The Parliamentary Library provides research and information to Senators and Members in support of their parliamentary duties. All research undertaken in this role is confidential. The Library does not undertake research for members of the public but does make published research papers available on the Parliament of Australia website. These can be found by searching the website or using ParlInfo search.

If the Parliamentary Library has published any documents listing and/or summarising 'discretionary powers' currently conferred on ministers of the federal government by legislation or regulation such publication will be available on the APH website.

The example (of a document that describes and lists powers of ministerial discretion) that you provide in your email relates to a Senate Committee inquiry conducted by the Senate Standing Committee on Legal and Constitutional Affairs. Senate Committees are managed by the Department of the Senate which is a separate Parliamentary Department to DPS.

We suggest that you may wish to direct any further inquiries to the Chamber Departments (being the Department of the Senate or the Department of the House of Representatives).

We hope that the above information is of assistance to you.

Regards

DPS Information Requests

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From: Simon

Delivered

Dear DPS Information Requests,

Thank you for the response yesterday and today's clarification.

Yours sincerely,

Simon

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