Guideline for Drafting the Constitution of the State of North Eastern Australia
(Will be further developed as resources allow)

Forward Statement

It would be expected that a learned commission be formed to draft the constitution. However, is reasonable that the residents of the State are afforded the opportunity to have as much prior input as possible.

The constitution of the new state will be the key to unite all its regions, ensuring that the grievances that lead to the separation from South East Queensland are not repeated and good governance is afforded to all its residents in their lawful pursuits to secure their wellbeing and prosperity.

To ensure equity between the regions it is essential the state has a bicameral parliament. Protections must be put in place to guarantee that those serving the people are accountable to the people in respect to their performance and remuneration.

The constitution must prevent any excess of the Parliament, the Bureaucracy and the Judiciary. While parliamentary election allow the voters to hold politicians to account, senior bureaucrats and members of the judiciary must be subject to public redress.

Reference Sources
As the new State of North Eastern Australia will be created by the separation of territory from the State of Queensland it would be appropriate to refer to the Constitution of Queensland Act 2001 as a primary source of content. Review of the content of the other Australian state Constitutions is also recommended.

While much of the contents of these existing State Constitutions will be suitable for directly incorporating into the Constitution of North Eastern Australia there will need to be significant differences to ensure good and fair governance of all regions and people of the vast State. It is essential that the Constitution addresses the grievances that culminated in the separation from the State of Queensland. Additionally, it is essential that there is provision for the future creation of a new viable state from its territory.

Preamble
In addition to the recognition of indigenous and Torres Straight peoples, the preamble shall acknowledge the hardships endured by the 19th century settlers and their efforts in the creation of the wealth of a new nation together with the celebration of the diverse nature of the immigrants who followed and further contributed to our society.

Acknowledge our British foundations, our Westminster system of government and legal system.

Acknowledge our 150+years connection to the former Colony and State of Queensland.

The constitution shall enable the peoples elected representative to provide good governance for all peoples of the state while enabling individuals to lawfully pursue opportunities to advance their wellbeing and wealth while requiring their acknowledgement of their mutual obligations to society.

Plus, preamble must end with the standard no legal claim clause.


Official Language
The constitution shall detail that English is the official language of the State.

Freedom of Speech
The constitution shall include the provision for the Freedom of Speech and provide for an Act to define the boundaries in respect to incitement of violence, the transmission of untruths that cause harm to individuals or groups.

Parliament
The State of North Eastern Australia should have bicameral parliament of a Legislative Assembly (LA) and a Legislative Council (LC). Initially, there should be one representative for every 15,000 voters in the LA. The number of representatives in the LC shall not exceed 50 percent of the number of LA representatives and each region shall have equal representation in the LC. Deadlock between the LA and the LC shall be resolved by a joint sitting.

Parliamentary Salaries
The State Premier shall be the highest paid peoples’ representative and shall not be paid more than 10 times the Australian minimum wage. Ministers, other parliamentary positions and members shall be paid set multiples of the Australian minimum wage. Parliamentary superannuation contributions shall be limited to twice the mandatory rate of private sector employer contributions and be paid into any authorized superannuation fund nominated by the individual.
Note: the reference to the Australian minimum wage shall be superseded by an appropriate multiple of the North Eastern Australian median wage.

Governor
The Governor shall be selected by the parliament and shall be an eminent Australian and a long term resident of a region of the State of North Eastern Australia.

Governor’s Salary
The Governor and shall not be paid more than 10 times the Australian minimum wage. Superannuation contributions shall be limited to twice the mandatory rate of private sector employer contributions and be paid into any authorized superannuation he/she nominates. All expenses incurred by the Governor in the performance of his/her duties will be meet by the Government.

Regions of the State
The state shall be divided into regions. The regions shall be defined by population, geographical features and historical associations. The Government shall engage the Australian Electoral Commission determine regional boundaries. The Government with the oversight of Departments shall as far as practicable enable regions to administer and deliver services to communities through Regional Authorities and Boards.

The State Government shall not initiate any action to require Local Government Councils existing at time of the formation of the State to amalgamate or change boundaries. However, where Local Government Councils are divided by Regional Boundaries the Government shall facilitate changes as requested by Local Government Councils. The Government shall also facilitate requested amalgamations of Local Government Councils within Regional Boundaries.

Bureaucracy
It is paramount that state’s public service numbers shall not exceed a to be determined fixed percentage of the states working age population. Total numbers for specific services shall be provided at predetermined rate per 10,000 people.

Historically, except for the mining industry, private sector wages and conditions in regional Australia, have been markedly lower than those in capital cities. However, Public Service pay scales are uniform across a state. It shall not be acceptable that North Eastern Australia Public Sector workers receive pay and conditions noticeably above those in the private sector preforming equivalent work. The Constitution must ensure that there is no disconnect of Public Sector wages and conditions from those of the private sector.

The maximum amount payable to any top tier public servant shall not exceed 10 times the Australian minimum wage.

Superannuation contributions shall be equivalent to those in the private sector and will be paid into an approved fund nominated by the individual employee.

All initial employment in the public service will be based on a three-year contract. In as much that the public service requires a level of expertise and experience to ensure the proficient delivery of its chartered functions it will also be the means to give the opportunity for a greater and wider diversity of the states’ peoples to gain valuable training and experience to enhance their future employment opportunities in the private sector. There needs to be a policy paper developed to detail rules, processes and procedures as to how the ongoing employment of public service personnel is managed to ensure the relevant levels of essential experience and expertise can be maintained while providing initial employment opportunities for significant numbers of young people entering the workforce.

Government Departments
State government departments shall not duplicate functions performed by other levels of levels of government. All departments shall develop procedures and processes that minimize administrative functions and maximizes delivery of services.

Departments shall not be centralized; rather individual departments will be dispersed amongst major regional centres. Selected centres shall have significant population to provide for adequate recruitment from local workforce, reasonable housing stocks such that accommodating new public sector workforce would not distort the local market and have amenity in both the form of services and leisure activities.

Government Departments shall as far as practical divest authority to local governments and boards to deliver services to communities.

Law Enforcement
Enforcement of all State and Local laws shall be performed by state police officers. The Police Force shall be structured such that it can provide a full range of operational and administrative positions to ensure continued employment as individuals age or suffer some degree of disability. The police force will provide suitability trained officers to local government to enforce by laws, state authorities such as parks and fishery’s departments. local government and state

Judiciary
The Queensland constitution as with other state constitutions merely provide for the establishment of the various courts and remuneration of the judicairy.  This has result with a complete disconnect between the court outcomes and community expections. It is paramount that the new state's constitution shall provide direction to the Judiciary in that they have an obligation to protect the greater society and the victims of crime ahead of the vexatious rights of those perpetrating unlawful acts.  It may be reasonable that in all matters decided by a jury where a guilty verdict has been delivered, a panel of at least six members of the jury shall, under the guidance of the presiding judge determine the offender’s sentence.

The constitution shoul direct the judiciary direct that those found guilty of a criminal offences make appropriated restitution to their victims.

The Judiciary should not afford persons found guilty of any offence anonymity, unless the victim is entitled anonymity and requests the court conceal the offender’s identity.

Legislative Review and Advisory Boards
The Constitution shall provide for the establishment of Legislative Review Board to assess the likely ‘legal’ strength and weakness of contentious legislation and provide a report and recommendation to the parliament through the Office of the Attorney General. The members of Board shall comprise of retired eminent of the judiciary and legal fraternity. All members will receive an ‘honoraria’. Review panels shall comprise of four Board members. Those Board members engaged on a review panel shall be provided with a reasonable allowance and reimbursement of expenses. All support services for the Board shall be provided by the Office of the Attorney General.

Where the Board is unable to provide members for a review panel the parliament shall have to rely solely on the advice of the Office of the Attorney General.

Advisory and Administrative Boards
The Constitution shall provide for the appointment of Advisory and Administrative Boards. These board shall comprise of at least 60 percent of state citizens that have

Royalties
The Constitution shall provide that except for land owned by foreign interests, land owners and local communities shall be direct beneficiaries of the resources of their land. Land owners will receive all payment in respect of leasing their land for mineral exploration and extraction and one third of royalties. Local communities shall receive one third of royalties while the State Government will receive the remainder. Where the land owner is a foreign entity the State Government shall receive all payments in respect to the lease and two thirds of the royalties.
Royalties earned by communities shall not reduce the distribution of funds by the State Government to those communities or their associated region.

Local Government

TBA