Victorian common rule award system taking shape

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Victorian common rule award system taking shape

With federal common rule awards set to commence in Victoria from 1 January 2005, there are necessary preliminary and preparatory exercises taking place.

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With federal common rule awards set to commence in Victoria from 1 January 2005, there are necessary preliminary and preparatory exercises taking place.

There are close to 200 applications before the Australian Industrial Relations Commission for Victorian common rule awards.

Up to the end of October 2004 a number of common rule awards have been processed and are set to commence, including:

  • Clerical and Administrative Employees Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Clothing Trades Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Transport Workers Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Poultry Industry Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Storage Services - General - Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Horticultural Industry Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Pastoral Industry Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Security Employees Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Catering Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Building Services Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • Clerks (Road Transport Industry) Victorian Common Rule Award 2005
  • The Hospitality Industry - Accommodation, Hotels, Resorts and Gaming Award 1998
  • Licensed Clubs (Victoria) Award 1998
  • Motels, Accommodation and Resorts Award 1998
  • Liquor and Accommodation Industry - Restaurants - Victoria - Award 1998

Potential overlap of existing awards and common rule awards

In a recent matter before Senior Deputy President Watson involving common rule applications by the Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union, the issue of overlap between existing federal awards and new common rule awards applicable in Victoria arose. This could happen in many industries where existing federal awards apply. The general principle is that the specific award will override the generic (common rule) award. The Senior Deputy President noted:

'... I have considered the issue of potential overlapping coverage.

Each declaration contains a provision … that it shall not apply to employers respondent by any means to any other award of the commission in respect of the employment by them of employees covered by that award.

… The LHMU also provided an undertaking that it was not its intention to seek to retrospectively enforce the common rule declarations in circumstances where an employer has been legitimately and appropriately applying another award which also covers the work performed by the employees.

This position was advanced without prejudice to the rights of parties to seek the making of "roping-in" awards, irrespective of the common rule declaration being applied by an employer or any rights under Part IX of the Act.

The LHMU's undertaking satisfied potential concerns raised earlier by some employer associations in respect of overlap. As a result, no objection was raised against the making of the declarations sought on this (or any other) ground.

No overlap or potential overlap was identified by the parties in relation to any of the declarations sought in the present matters.'

See: Application by LHMU

More information

The AIRC has a dedicated Website for information relating to the new common rule system being introduced into Victoria.

 

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