Federal Register of Legislation - Australian Government

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A Bill for an Act to amend the law relating to cashless welfare arrangements to protect pensioners and other social security recipients, and for other purposes
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Registered 25 Oct 2021
Introduced HR 25 Oct 2021
Table of contents.

2019‑2020‑2021

 

The Parliament of the

Commonwealth of Australia

 

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

 

 

 

 

Presented and read a first time

 

 

 

 

Protecting Pensioners from the Cashless Debit Card Bill 2021

 

No.      , 2021

 

(Mr Hill)

 

 

 

A Bill for an Act to amend the law relating to cashless welfare arrangements to protect pensioners and other social security recipients, and for other purposes

  

  


Contents

1............ Short title............................................................................................. 1

2............ Commencement................................................................................... 1

3............ Schedules............................................................................................ 2

Schedule 1—Amendments                                                                                                3

Social Security (Administration) Act 1999                                                             3

Schedule 2—Obligations of Minister                                                                          4

 

 


A Bill for an Act to amend the law relating to cashless welfare arrangements to protect pensioners and other social security recipients, and for other purposes

The Parliament of Australia enacts:

1  Short title

                   This Act is the Protecting Pensioners from the Cashless Debit Card Act 2021.

2  Commencement

             (1)  Each provision of this Act specified in column 1 of the table commences, or is taken to have commenced, in accordance with column 2 of the table. Any other statement in column 2 has effect according to its terms.

 

Commencement information

Column 1

Column 2

Column 3

Provisions

Commencement

Date/Details

1.  The whole of this Act

The day after this Act receives the Royal Assent.

 

Note:          This table relates only to the provisions of this Act as originally enacted. It will not be amended to deal with any later amendments of this Act.

             (2)  Any information in column 3 of the table is not part of this Act. Information may be inserted in this column, or information in it may be edited, in any published version of this Act.

3  Schedules

                   Legislation that is specified in a Schedule to this Act is amended or repealed as set out in the applicable items in the Schedule concerned, and any other item in a Schedule to this Act has effect according to its terms.

Schedule 1Amendments

  

Social Security (Administration) Act 1999

1  Subsection 123UP(4)

Omit “1 January 2023”, substitute “1 February 2022”.

2  Subsections 124PF(1) and (3)

Omit “31 December 2022”, substitute “31 January 2022”.

3  Subsection 124PF(4)

Omit “1 January 2023”, substitute “1 February 2022”.

Schedule 2Obligations of Minister

  

1  Definitions

(1)       In this Schedule:

cashless debit card scheme means Part 3D of the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999.

Family Responsibilities Commission means the Family Responsibilities Commission established under the Family Responsibilities Commission Act 2008 (Qld).

Indigenous person means:

                     (a)  an Aboriginal person (within the meaning of the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Act 2005); or

                     (b)  a Torres Strait Islander (within the meaning of that Act).

plan area means any of the following:

                     (a)  the Ceduna area;

                     (b)  the East Kimberley area;

                     (c)  the Goldfields area;

                     (d)  the Bundaberg and Hervey Bay area;

                     (e)  the Cape York area.

publication deadline means the later of:

                     (a)  31 January 2022; and

                     (b)  the day occurring 7 days after this item commences.

(2)       An expression that is used in Part 3D of the Social Security (Administration) Act 1999 has the same meaning, when used in this Schedule, as in that Part.

2  Local services and jobs plans

(1)       The Minister must, for each plan area, prepare a written plan (a local services and jobs plan) for:

                     (a)  creating jobs in the area;

                     (b)  improving community services in the area; and

                     (c)  addressing social issues in the area.

(2)       In preparing a local services and jobs plan for a plan area, the Minister must:

                     (a)  have regard to the principle that the plan should prioritise evidence‑based local investments; and

                     (b)  consult with the following:

                              (i)  community organisations, including First Nations organisations, that operate in the area;

                             (ii)  health services that operate in the area;

                            (iii)  businesses that operate in the area;

                            (iv)  the State in which the area is located; and

                             (v)  each relevant local council.

(3)       Without limiting subitem (1), the local services and jobs plan for the Cape York area must set out transitionary arrangements to support the continued operation of the Family Responsibilities Commission.

(4)       The Minister must cause the local services and jobs plan for each plan area to be:

                     (a)  published on the Department’s website on or before the publication deadline; and

                     (b)  tabled in each House of the Parliament within 3 sitting days of that House after the plan is published under paragraph (a).

(5)       A local services and jobs plan:

                     (a)  is not a legislative instrument; and

                     (b)  does not affect any legal rights, liabilities or duties.

Constitutional basis of this item

(6)       The purpose of this item is to inform:

                     (a)  the Parliament in making laws for the peace, order and good government of the Commonwealth; and

                     (b)  the Executive Government in exercising the executive power of the Commonwealth, including the execution and maintenance the laws of the Commonwealth;

including with respect to the following:

                     (c)  corporations to which paragraph 51(xx) of the Constitution applies;

                     (d)  invalid and old‑age pensions;

                     (e)  the provision of maternity allowances, widows’ pensions, child endowment, unemployment, pharmaceutical, sickness and hospital benefits, medical and dental services, benefits to students and family allowances;

                      (f)  special laws for Indigenous persons;

                     (g)  financial assistance to the States.

Cost of cashless debit card scheme

(1)       The Minister must prepare a written estimate of the full cost to the Commonwealth of the operation of the cashless debit card scheme.

(2)       The Minister must cause the estimate to be:

                     (a)  published on the Department’s website on or before the publication deadline; and

                     (b)  tabled in each House of the Parliament within 3 sitting days of that House after the estimate is published under paragraph (a).

4  Contract with Indue Ltd

(1)       The Minister must cause a copy of each contract between the Commonwealth and Indue Ltd relating to the operation of the cashless debit card scheme to be:

                     (a)  published on the Department’s website on or before the later of:

                              (i)  31 December 2021; and

                             (ii)  the day occurring 7 days after this item commences; and

                     (b)  tabled in each House of the Parliament within 3 sitting days of that House after the contract is published under paragraph (a).

(2)       Before publishing or tabling a copy of a contract under subitem (1), the Minister may remove from the copy any confidential commercial information contained in the contract.

5  Technology working group and product level blocking

(1)       The Minister must cause copies of each document mention in subitem (2) to be:

                     (a)  published on the Department’s website within 7 days after the commencement of this item; and

                     (b)  tabled in each House of the Parliament within 3 sitting days of that House after the document is published under paragraph (a).

(2)       For the purposes of subitem (1), the documents are:

                     (a)  the minutes of the cashless debit card technology working group; and

                     (b)  all other documents associated with the working group that, on the commencement of this item, are in the Minister’s possession; and

                     (c)  all documents associated with product level blocking under the cashless debit card scheme that, on the commencement of this item, are in the Minister’s possession.