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AGAINST – Infrastructure Australia Amendment (Independent Review) Bill 2023 - Consideration in Detail - Publication requirement + Post-completion cost data

The majority voted in favour of disagreeing with amendments introduced by Wentworth MP Allegra Spender (Independent), which means they failed.

What do the amendments do?

Ms Spender explained that:

These amendments are simple improvements to the Infrastructure Australia Amendment (Independent Review) Bill 2023. They do two things. Firstly, they create a requirement that Infrastructure Australia publishes the infrastructure audits which it undertakes from time to time. It has surprised me to learn that no such requirement currently exists—that it is possible that Infrastructure Australia could take a strategic audit of the nation's infrastructure and not actually have to make that audit publicly available. Some would say that scenario is unlikely, and fair enough, but the standards of transparency in infrastructure investment are so parlous that I believe the parliament should legislate to require publication not just of these audits but of much more of the material which is used by government to consider infrastructure investments.

The second thing this set of amendments does is to require Infrastructure Australia to collect project cost data once the projects are complete. It astonishes me that this is not already commonplace and that there are no established mechanisms by which we can learn the lessons from past projects to better inform our future decisions. There are already kinds of post-completion reports prepared by state governments, but these are not public, and, I understand, these reports are generally inadequate for any kind of learning. This should change, and my amendments would lay the foundations for this to begin.

Amendment text

See OpenAustralia.org.au for the text of the amendments.

Summary

Date and time: 10:20 AM on 2023-05-24
Allegra Spender's vote: No
Total number of "aye" votes: 84
Total number of "no" votes: 15
Total number of abstentions: 51
Related bill: Infrastructure Australia Amendment (Independent Review) Bill 2023

Adapted from information made available by theyvoteforyou.org.au

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