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Senate Additional Estimates – 27th February 2018 #casa fail to meet time limit

The start of 2018, with the Senate Additional Estimates due on the 27th February 2018 is upon us.

#casa is not off to a flying start, with outstanding answers due from the last Senate estimates, some 3-months ago.

Is this another “finger-up” exercise??

Where is the #casa Board on this, as it appears to be an organisation out of control and as you read through the Questions on Notice [QON] by the Senator’s, the lack of leadership by Carmody is obvious.

And his right hand man, the Discrepant Doctor Aleck is in best “dodging the question” mode. By the way, Aleck became Head of #casa legal again during the deck chair shuffle in 2017.

Perhaps a new year will shuffle in “The Rise of The Drones”, which can be brought down by well prepared Senator’s.

Questions on notice from 23rd October 2017 RRAT Senate Estimates


A good example of how Carmody deals with people who he answers to – the Senator’s

Imagine how he would handle those who are liable for #casa actions.


Question on notice no. 112  Portfolio question number: 461

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Janet Rice: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 23 October 2017—

What is the status of the flight crew fatigue rules, under CAO 48.1, currently?

  1. Have the anticipated changes been delayed? If so, for how long, and why?
  2. When is it anticipated that these fatigue rules will be in place?

Question on notice no. 113  Portfolio question number: 436

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Glenn Sterle: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017

ACTING CHAIR: You are inconsistent you being CASA. Let’s talk about the fellow who flew the drone down to Bunnings to pick up the sausage. What fine did he get?

Mr Carmody: I don’t know. One of my colleagues would know.

Senator GALLACHER: $3,000, wasn’t it?

ACTING CHAIR: Let’s get it out. I’d ask it to be on the record so every Australian can hear it: as long as you are a pilot and it’s the firsttime, you’re going to get away with it. Ready kids? All the kids are going to get the drones for this Christmas. There are rules that say you can’t do this, but it depends on who you are. There seems to be one rule for one and rules for others. I’m waiting for whoever you can bring up, Mr Carmody, because I really want to know why a pilot can fly a drone over Parliament House and then just get a tap on the toenail. But let’s hear what happened to the gentleman who flew his drone down to Bunnings to pick up a sausage.

Mr Carmody: I haven’t got the details. I’m waiting for one of my colleagues, who I hope will have the details of the offence. We’ll have to dig it up…

Mr Carmody: Dr Aleck will have some details about penalties.

Dr Aleck: I regret to say that I don’t have these identified by the Bunnings event.

Senator STERLE: Do you want me to google it?

Dr Aleck: I recall I will confirm this that that matter did invite an infringement notice.

Senator GALLACHER: $3,000 is what was reported.

Dr Aleck: Whatever the penalty was, if that was the case.

Senator GALLACHER: He put it on Facebook that his drone went down, picked up a sausage, came back. You looked at that and fined him $3,000. Dr Aleck: I believe that was the case, and I’m not doubting it. I’ll confirm it.


Question on notice no. 114

Portfolio question number: 437

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Barry O’Sullivan: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017—

CHAIR: I hope you don’t mind me interjecting. I wasn’t even going to buy into this I was half asleep here when this started. Do you mind if I return to a line of questioning of Dr Aleck? So far you’ve indicated that you identified one person and you reflected on the inability to identify others because you weren’t aware of their identity. So the one person you spoke to was a member of parliament.

Let me ask you, Dr Aleck:  surely, question 101 from your investigator would be to the member of parliament, ‘Who else was here?’ and I assume the member of parliament ought to be able to tell you, with about 80 or 90 per cent accuracy, how many people were here and who they were. My question is very specific: did your investigator ask the individual, the member of parliament who you’re about to identify, who else was present and how
many there were?

Dr Aleck: If our investigator had the opportunity to speak with them

CHAIR: If you don’t know the answer, Dr Aleck, say, ‘I do not know the answer.’

Dr Aleck: I do not know the answer, but I can assure you that the question

CHAIR: No, there’s no need for you to editorialise. I ask you to take on notice, with your investigator, whether they asked the member of parliament about who was there and how many there were. But you’re about to identify the member of parliament who was interviewed.

Dr Aleck: The member of parliament whose office was contacted was Michelle Landry and, as I explained, our efforts to interview Ms Landry were unsuccessful at this point.

CHAIR: So we’re dealing in months here. How many efforts have been made to engage with Ms Landry over the months?

Dr Aleck: I’ll take that on notice, but Ms Landry was identified only relatively recently. We had misidentified her as somebody else in the frame and that was corrected.


Question on notice no. 115  Portfolio question number: 438

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Glenn Sterle: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017

Senator STERLE: I’ll make a statement here, rather than a question. You ping any other Australian for breaking these rules, and you don’t think we’re going to come back here and say, ‘Here we go again’? You cannot be serious. You are the enforcers.
You are the ones who lay down the rules. You are so blinded because politicians or political employees can get away with murder around your rules defend that.

Mr Carmody: I’m happy to provide on notice lists of where we’ve provided counselling letters for similar offences. I didn’t realise that, from what Senator Gallacher said, you were after a higher standard. I thought you were after the same standard. We’re very happy to provide on notice where we’ve issued counselling letters as well, if that would help.

Senator STERLE: Have you had to counsel any pilots for breaking your rules for usage of drones?

Mr Carmody: I’d have to take it on notice. We’ve counselled a number of people. As I said, it depends on the circumstance. We’ve fined a number of people, and it depends on the circumstance.


Question on notice no. 116  Portfolio question number: 439

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Barry O’Sullivan: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017—

CHAIR: I’m not done. If you’d like some names, Dr Aleck: the Deputy Prime Minister, Senator Canavan, Mr Perrett, Mr McCormack and Mr Buchholz were there, and I’ll have some more for you in the fullness of time. My question to you is did your investigators even interview the operator of the drone?

Dr Aleck: Yes.

CHAIR: Did they ask him who else was present or what numbers were present?

Dr Aleck: I’ll take that question on notice. I assume they conducted a normal investigation, which would have involved questions of that.


Question on notice no. 117 Portfolio question number: 440

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Barry O’Sullivan: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017—

CHAIR: You’re telling me someone started an investigation and interviewed an individual, at least with a view to a prosecution, and didn’t record it to the standard that would be required to underpin that prosecution? Are there no notes, no contemporaneous record of the conversation, no recording taped, no video or otherwise? Is that what you’re telling us? Dr Aleck: I will only say that the maximum consequence of such an event was an infringement notice. I’m not aware of matters of that kind.

CHAIR: That is not the burden of my question. Are you telling this committee that your investigator, confronted with a witness or a potential offender, who you say wasn’t totally cooperative, did not record in any shape or form the interview that took place?

Dr Aleck: I said I don’t believe so, but I’ll confirm that.


Question on notice no. 119 Portfolio question number: 442

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October
2017—

Senator XENOPHON: It is a sensitive issue. The standard form recommendation, as I understand it, is a document relating to adding references to a flight crew licence condition. Is that right?

Mr Carmody: In reality it’s a recommendation that might have many functions. It’s a way of combining information to a decision-maker like me, a recommendation for us to take a particular course of action. So it might not be
licensing; it could be anything.

Senator XENOPHON: Sure, but the normal course is that for the document to be a valid document, it ought to be a signed document is that right?

Mr Carmody: Yes, that would be reasonable.

Senator XENOPHON: That’s in terms of the appropriateness. My understanding is that a recommendation was made, but it was not signed off. In other words, are you satisfied, and you may want to take this on notice, that the standard form recommendation that I have referred you to is appropriately executed so as to be a valid document?

Mr Carmody: I’d have to take it on notice. I haven’t got the document. I don’t know the date of the document.

Senator XENOPHON: I’m happy for you to take that on notice, but I’ve got concerns as to the validity of the document in relation to that. This document relates to Mr James having to take a proficiency check prior to being able to act as a pilot in command of a multicrew aircraft. I’ve provided you with a copy of that. It’s a form signed by Mr Roger Chambers, but my understanding is that it is not properly endorsed. Are you able to confirm that, or do you need to take that on notice?

Mr Carmody: I’ll take that on notice.


Question on notice no. 120 Portfolio question number: 443

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017—

Senator XENOPHON: So there’s a question there: is the standard form recommendation incomplete? I asked you to take that on notice. If it is in some way incomplete or deficient, that may have some bearing on the decision-making process of CASA. It’s a technical question, but could you take that on notice?

Mr Carmody: I’ll take it on notice, but if it’s a current standard form recommendation, then, as I said before, that’s why I’d like to review it. The standard form recommendation that I assume underpins the original decision probably has not changed. Anyway, I’ll take it on notice and have a look at it.


Question on notice no. 121  Portfolio question number: 444

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017—

Senator XENOPHON: I’ll put this in general terms. There’s an issue of process that I’m concerned about. The names of the individuals aren’t so key to this. Who was authorised to see the draft report, as to the processes involved for that? Can you take that on notice?

Mr Carmody: Certainly.

Senator XENOPHON: Were there any individuals who weren’t authorised to see the report who did see the report?

Mr Carmody: I’ll take both of those on notice. The draft report is provided to us to provide comment on, and you would expect my inspectorate those who are involved in the matter to be reviewing that report and providing comment


Question on notice no. 122  Portfolio question number: 445

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017—

Senator XENOPHON: Does that relate to documents such as standard form recommendations or not?

Dr Aleck: I think under the FOI legislation there are some limitations about what goes on there. But anything that we’re required to post publicly will be on there.

Senator XENOPHON: So there’s no question that these documents that weren’t posted publicly should have been posted publicly?

Can you take that into account?

Dr Aleck: If they were within the category of documents that ought to have been identified then I…

Senator XENOPHON: If you could take that on notice.

Dr Aleck: I will, yes.


Question on notice no. 123  Portfolio question number: 446

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Nick Xenophon: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017—

Senator XENOPHON: It’s good to clarify that. I’m almost finished. The Senate inquiry some time ago found that there were a number of points of fault in the Pel-Air incident. It’s clear there are a number of impositions on Mr James. Can CASA advise what other officials or what other entities by title, not name have had a remedial action placed on them in terms of whether there were multiple points of fault leading to this incident?

Mr Carmody: Sorry, Senator, can I just clarify that. Are you talking specifically about the Pel-Air incident?

Senator XENOPHON: Yes, I am.

Mr Carmody: And whether we have placed restrictions on anyone else? Senator

XENOPHON: Yes. Mr Carmody: I can take it on notice, but I understand the only restriction that was placed would be a restriction placed on the pilot in command, at this stage. I don’t believe any other restrictions have been placed on the first officer, but I can check.

Senator XENOPHON: And not on management issues with Pel-Air and their systems? Mr Carmody: I don’t know whether that leads to any restrictions, but I’ll take that on notice. Senator XENOPHON: And, on notice, there are issues of air traffic control and weather forecasting, so, if not restrictions, were there recommendations made in relation to improvements of that?

Mr Carmody: Certainly I’m aware that a number of changes or improvements were made post that accident, but I can provide those responses on notice. I think they’ve been provided before, but I’m quite happy to provide them.

Senator XENOPHON: Okay. On notice, after the release of the report, can you advise the committee of every person who was identified as contributing to the accident directly or indirectly and any action that CASA has taken in respect of those persons. That is something that can be done after the ATSB report.

Mr Carmody: We will have to wait for the ATSB report, but ertainly.


Question on notice no. 124  Portfolio question number: 447

2017-18 Supplementary budget estimates

Rural and Regional Affairs and Transport Committee, Infrastructure and Regional Development Portfolio

Senator Glenn Sterle: asked the Civil Aviation Safety Authority on 27 October 2017

Senator STERLE: Mr Carmody, I know you are just going to have a read of that, but I want to be very, very precise here. Dr Aleck, I’m going to ask you, in terms of your investigation and interviewing of Mr Ashby, did your investigators ask Mr Ashby if he sought approval to fly the drone over Parliament House from any government agency, department or bodysecurity agency?

Dr Aleck: I will take your question on notice as to whether he was asked if he had asked permission, but what we do have in the material in fact that’s before me now is that we inquired of the AFP and of the organiser of the event, and no permission was sought of those

Senator STERLE: I will come back a couple of steps. Can you tell this committee: did your investigators ask Mr Ashby or did Mr Ashby offer advice or answer your investigators’ questions that he sought approval from the AFP to fly the drone?

Dr Aleck: That information I haven’t looked all through this yet, but I can’t answer that question at the moment. I’m not aware of that, but I haven’t looked thoroughly at the materials.

Senator STERLE: How long would it take you to get that information?

Dr Aleck: Whether our investigator asked Mr Ashby that question?

Senator STERLE: Whether Mr Ashby offered an answer to your investigators that he sought approval to fly the drone over
Parliament House on that day from the AFP?

Dr Aleck: It shouldn’t take long.

Senator STERLE: Thank you. I’ll wait for that answer.

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