Peter Costello

Media Releases

2003-2004 Budget - Media Lockup Arrangements

NO.016

2003-2004 BUDGET - MEDIA LOCKUP ARRANGEMENTS

The Treasurer will deliver the 2003-2004 Budget at 7.30 pm AEST on Tuesday 13 May 2003. The usual lockup arrangements will again be available for media organisations in Canberra, based in the main Committee Room area in Parliament House. The lockup will begin at 1.30 pm AEST and conclude when the Treasurer begins his Speech.

As usual, security considerations are paramount in the lockup arrangements. To obtain entry to the lockup, media representatives must sign and have witnessed by a Treasury official the necessary 'Form of Undertaking'. Attendees may be required to produce proof of their bona fides as an employee of a media organisation prior to signing the Undertaking and thereupon will gain entry to the lockup. A copy of the Undertaking format is attached for information. Please note there are some minor modifications to the Undertaking this year, including specifying the need to remain in the lockup until the Treasurer begins his Speech.

Any breach in the letter and spirit of the Undertaking and in the use of the lockup facility will be regarded most seriously. Your particular attention is drawn to the fact that breaches of the terms of the Undertaking may be in contravention of section 79(3) of the Crimes Act 1914, a copy of which is also attached.

Note also that an important requirement of the Form of Undertaking stipulates that Budget information is not to be broadcast by any media outlets before the Treasurer conveys it to Parliament.

NO PROVISION FOR ENTRY CAN BE MADE FOR OTHER GROUPS OR INDIVIDUALS.


As in past years, arrangements may be made for secure landlines to group headquarters of the approved major print organisations for SUB-EDITING PURPOSES ONLY. Entry to these sub-lockups is restricted to sub-editorial staff only - JOURNALISTS ARE NOT PERMITTED. These arrangements involve the establishment of a secure area on the news organisations' premises which is supervised by Commonwealth staff for the duration of the Canberra lockup. Any communication between the Canberra lockup and the sub-lockups will require security encryption - absolutely no transmission will take place without encryption.

As usual, participating organisations will bear their own costs of participation and attendance.

The Budget Speech and other major documents (including the Budget Overview and Economic Outlook) will be electronically available at the lockup. The electronic version can be saved on disk in any available format.

Prior arrangements are to be made with Treasury as follows:

By 30 April 2003 (at the latest): would you please provide:

Kerrin Mercer, (Liaison Unit, Treasury) by fax (02) 6263 2992 or email kmercer@treasury.gov.au with:

  • a full list of the organisation's employees' names and positions seeking access;

and

Matt Osmond (Facilities Manager, Voice Comms, Treasury) on (02)6263 3863 or (02)6263 2869
(fax) with:

  • all secure data, voice or fax lines requirements.

General

A plan of the Committee Rooms with the usual designated space allocation will be displayed in the Press Gallery several days before the lockup. Due to the usual limited space available, organisations should restrict their representation to minimum, essential employees only. It is intended that organisations' locations will be essentially the same as in 2002.

Please be advised that all lockups will be conducted in a non-smoking environment.
Parliament House regulations also do not permit the bringing of alcohol into the lockup area.

You are reminded of the terms and conditions for entry to the Budget lockups. We particularly remind prospective attendees that:

CELLULAR/DIGITAL TELEPHONES, PAGERS OR HANDSETS OR ANY COMPUTER OR OTHER UNAPPROVED EQUIPMENT THAT IS CAPABLE OF TRANSMITTING A SIGNAL TO OUTSIDE THE LOCKUP ARE NOT ALLOWED WITHIN THE LOCKUP.

Storage facilities for such equipment will be available at the lockup entrance. There will be no contact outside the lockup other than with the use of approved secure communication links. As mentioned above, any breach of the undertaking will be regarded most seriously.

Copies of the Budget and associated documents will be on sale at all Government Info Shops at 7.30 pm (AEST) on Tuesday 13 May 2003. Information will also be on the Internet (www.budget.gov.au) at 7.30 pm.

Any general questions relating to the lockups should be directed to Peter Coan (02)6263 3736 or Ray Gavin (02) 6263 2794 at Treasury.

NIKI SAVVA
MEDIA ADVISER TO THE TREASURER
PETER COAN
MANAGER, LIAISON (TSY)

CANBERRA
2 April 2003


ATTACHMENT

**NOTE: THIS DOCUMENT IS A SAMPLE ONLY**

FORM OF UNDERTAKING

I,
(Print Full NAME)
of

(Print FULL ADDRESS)

a representative

of
(Print Full Name of MEDIA ORGANISATION)

and deriving the main component of my income in the media industry,

ACCEPT the privileges extended to me in relation to early perusal of the XXXXXX Budget Speech and related documents ('the Budget documents') and, in return for those privileges;

STATE that I understand and accept that the Budget documents and the information they contain ('Budget information') are secret until 7.30 pm AEST on Tuesday XXXXXX ('the Budget Speech commencement'); and

UNDERTAKE as follows:

  • I will not leave the lockup before the Budget Speech commencement without the permission of a Treasury official.
  • I will not make or permit any publication, written or by other means, of any facts, statements, opinions or other information contained in the Budget documents, prior to the Budget Speech commencement.
  • I will not broadcast or place on the internet or otherwise disseminate publicly any Budget information during the period between the Budget Speech commencement and the point in the Budget Speech when that information is revealed by the Treasurer to the Parliament, or is otherwise publicly disseminated by the Treasurer.
  • I will not give, convey, communicate or otherwise disclose the Budget documents or their content or any part thereof to any person before the Budget Speech commencement, except to another person who is also participating in the lockup.
  • I will not bring into the lockup computer equipment, cellular/digital telephone equipment or any other equipment capable of transmitting information to outside the lockup unless that equipment has been specifically approved by a Treasury official.

I UNDERSTAND AND ACCEPT that if, before the Treasurer reveals Budget information to the Parliament or otherwise disseminates that information, I provide any Budget document or communicate any Budget information to any person other than persons who are also participating in the lockup, I shall render myself liable to criminal prosecution.

I have read this Form of Undertaking and section 79(3) of the Crimes Act 1914 (a copy of which is reproduced overleaf) and I have taken reasonable steps to ensure that the above named media organisation is made fully aware of these conditions, including the consequences of a breach of this Undertaking.

I ACKNOWLEDGE that should I breach this Undertaking:

  • I may be prohibited from taking part in the lockup in future years; and
  • other representatives of the above named media organisation may be prohibited from taking part in the lockup in future years.

Signed: .................................................................................... Date:XXXXXX

Witness: .....................................................................................(Treasury Official)


ATTACHMENT

EXTRACT FROM CRIMES ACT 1914

'Official Secrets...
79.(3) If a person communicates ... prescribed information, to a person, other than:

  1. a person to whom he is authorised to communicate it; or
  2. a person to whom it is, in the interest of the Commonwealth or a part of the Queen's dominions, his duty to communicate it;

or permits a person, other than a person referred to in paragraph (a) or (b), to have access to it, he shall be guilty of an offence.
Penalty: Imprisonment for 2 years.'

 

2 Apr 2003

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