Corruption watchdog savages draft of ‘Trad laws’
INTEGRITY laws sparked by Deputy Premier Jackie Trad's purchase of an undeclared investment home will be redrafted after the state's corruption watchdog publicly savaged them as an ineffective guard against corruption.
In an embarrassing day for the Government, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk conceded the so-called 'Trad Laws' still needed some work as Crime and Corruption Commission chair Alan MacSporran made it clear he'd never given them his seal of approval.
The stinging rebuke came after the Attorney-General Yvette D'Ath promised the proposed laws would deliver the CCC's recommendation in full and suggested Mr MacSporran was "satisfied" with the Government's proposed offences.
Mr MacSporran told the committee hearing considering the Bill he had been consulted by Ms D'Ath, who told him she planned to require "dishonest intent" as part of the offence.
"In that context, I did not inform the Attorney-General that such a requirement would not meet the CCC's recommendations but did state that when we saw the Bill and had the opportunity to fully consider its terms, we would then be in a position to make a detailed submission as we have subsequently done," he said.
It's understood MPs are angry over what they consider to be a botched handling of the Bill, which has pushed the integrity issues that damaged Ms Trad last year back into the limelight.
Ms Palaszczuk said her Government was "very determined" to put the laws in place, adding: "We will get them right."
"There may be changes, that's why we have the committee process, so the committee can make recommendations to government, and the government can either accept or reject that," she said.
Mr MacSporran said the Bill was "not an effective measure to prevent corruption" and did not implement the CCC's recommended changes.
The Government's proposal only makes a failure to disclose a conflict of interest criminal - punishable by two year's jail - if there was proof this was done with dishonest intent.
But Mr MacSporran said it should be a strict liability offence to ensure it "raises the bar of accountability for failure to declare and failure to update your register of interests."
He told the committee all MPs including backbenchers should be covered by the tougher laws because they too were involved in decision-making.
The CCC's proposals would see Queensland enact some of the toughest laws against MPs failing to disclose conflicts of interest in the world, he said.
"Frankly, if our suggestion is adopted it would make the Queensland parliament one of the leaders in this very important space worldwide," he said.
"I think that is something to be applauded.
"I can't stress enough that this is such an important plank of public confidence in the way that parliament and the democratic process works."