Time pressure on modern awards means written submissions only

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Time pressure on modern awards means written submissions only

Because of time pressures to have modern awards ready by 31 December this year, the AIRC has announced that applications to vary such awards will usually be dealt with by written submissions.

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Because of time pressures to have modern awards ready by 31 December this year, the AIRC has announced that applications to vary such awards will usually be dealt with by written submissions.
 
In a statement, the AIRC said an exception to this is the program already announced for dealing with transitional provisions.
 
‘In some cases it may be necessary to defer until 2010 consideration of applications which do not have to be determined prior to 31December 2009,’ it said.
 
‘This will depend on the circumstances including the nature of the application and the overall volume of matters.'
 
Considered on their merits
 
‘Applications to vary the substantive terms of modern awards will be considered on their merits.'
 
‘It should be noted, however, that the Commission would be unlikely to alter substantive award terms so recently made after a comprehensive review of the relevant facts and circumstances including award and NAPSA provisions applying across the Commonwealth.'
 
‘Normally a significant change in circumstances would be required before the Commission would embark on a reconsideration.'
 
‘A variation in the Minister’s award modernisation request made after the modern award might constitute such a change.’
 
Transitional provisions dealt with separately
 
The AIRC said proposals to vary modern awards to include transitional provisions will be dealt with separately.
 
It said a timetable has been established for dealing with transitional provisions in the priority and Stage 2 awards.
 
A program will be announced in due course for dealing with proposals for transitional provisions in Stage 3 awards.
 
Transitional provisions for Stage 4 awards will be dealt with at the same time as the modern awards are being considered, in accordance with the timetable already announced.
 
Regarding changes to the restaurant and catering industry award, the AIRC said that given the history and nature of the matter, however, some modifications to the process may be necessary.
 
‘In the first instance we require that interested parties lodge written submissions, drafts and all proposals concerning the scope, content and transitional arrangements for the proposed award and any consequential alterations to the Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2010 by 24July 2009.'
 
‘We shall give consideration to the steps necessary to determine the issues once we have had an opportunity to consider what has been filed. These steps might include an exposure draft and further consultations.’
 
Minister’s views welcomed
 
The AIRC said that at the mention on 22 June 2009, a number of parties foreshadowed arguments concerning the scope of the proposed award and its terms.
 
‘Given the circumstances which have led to our consideration of the proposed award, we would be assisted by any indications on behalf of the Minister of the scope and terms of the proposed award, including terms relating to hours of work, penalty rates and overtime.’
 
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