Counter-Terrorism Legislation Amendment (Sunsetting Review and Other Measures) Bill 2021

Explanatory Memorandum

(Circulated by authority of the Attorney-General, Senator the Honourable Michaelia Cash)


1. This Bill will extend for a further three years the declared areas provisions in sections 119.2 and 119.3 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Criminal Code) that are scheduled to sunset on 7 September 2021. This Bill will also make amendments to the Intelligence Services Act 2001 (Intelligence Services Act) to provide that the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security (PJCIS) may review the operation, effectiveness and proportionality of the declared areas provisions prior to their new sunset date.

2. In extending these critical counter-terrorism provisions, the Bill will implement the Government's response to the recommendations of the recent PJCIS review of these provisions. The PJCIS report was tabled on 25 February 2021.

3. The Bill will also extend for a further 15 months the following Australian Federal Police (AFP) powers that are also scheduled to sunset on 7 September 2021:

the control order regime in Division 104 of the Criminal Code
the preventative detention order regime in Division 105 of the Criminal Code, and
the stop, search and seizure powers in Division 3A of Part IAA of the Crimes Act 1914 (Crimes Act).

4. The Bill will also amend the Independent National Security Legislation Monitor Act 2010 (INSLM Act) to extend the reporting date for the Independent National Security Legislation Monitor's (INSLM's) review of Division 105A of the Criminal Code to as soon as practicable after 7 December 2021.

5. Division 105A provides for continuing detention orders for high risk terrorist offenders. The new reporting date will enable the INSLM to engage in interstate consultations which were disrupted by COVID-19 travel restrictions, and provide a greater body of evidence to review the practical operation of Division 105A.


6. The amendments in this Bill will have no financial impact on Government expenditure or revenue.

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