Establishment and Function
The Law Reform Committee was established under the Parliamentary Committees (Amendment) Act 1992 (No.64). The purpose of the committee was to:
" (a) to inquire into, consider and report to the Parliament where required or permitted so to do by or under this Act, on any proposal, matter or thing concerned with legal, constitutional or Parliamentary reform or with the administration of justice but excluding any proposal, matter or thing concerned with the joint standing orders of the Parliament or the standing orders of a House of Parliament or the rules of practice of a House of the Parliament;
(b) to examine, report and make recommendations to the Parliament in respect of any proposal or matter relating to law reform in Victoria where required so to do by or under this Act, in accordance with the terms of reference under which the proposal or matter is referred to the Committee. " [new S. 4E].
The Committee effectively replaced the Legal and Constitutional Committee (VA 3141).
Joint investigatory committees
The Law Reform Committee is a joint investigatory committee of the Legislative Assembly and Legislative Council. As such it may comprise no more than nine members of which no more than two members could be appointed by the Council and no less than two appointed by the Assembly.
As a joint investigatory committee, the Law Reform Committee could inquire into matters referred to it by a resolution of either House or by order of the Governor-In-Council. It may also inquire, consider or report to Parliament on any annual report or document relevant to its functions laid before either House. Recommendations made by the Law Reform Committee (and any other joint investigatory committee other than the Public Bodies Review Committee) are not automatically accepted by Parliament. The appropriate responsible Minister, however, is required to table a report stating action to be taken regarding these recommendations within 6 months of the tabling of the report.
**Special Access Conditions**
Although records transferred from Parliament are available for public inspection, special access conditions apply. Such records are transferred to the Public Record Office on the understanding that they remain the property of the Parliament of Victoria. Parliamentary records are transferred on condition that all requests for access will be referred to the Clerk of the Legislative Council/Legislative Assembly as appropriate, for determination in each case.
Application to inspect the records should be made to the appropriate officer and written authorisation must be presented at the Public Record Office Search Rooms before records can be made available for inspection.