The Register is on its way

The sample volume of the Register of Members’ Interests is in many ways a mundane looking tome. Representatives’ entries look like forms any one of us might fill in. Some standard and diligent, no doubt from years of filling in the same forms with exactly the information requested in the headings, others’ perhaps overly detailed. Cover letters volunteering information absolutely not requested when Members feel they should do so. Typically, we see shares, names of banks mortgages are with, homes, and cars, along with membership of clubs and associations. However, there are no amounts specified in the pecuniary interests stated. Its only possible to infer from some of the headings where there is a requirement to register items over a certain figure. eg. Gifts worth over $750.

The Committee of Privileges and Members’ Interests was not able to discuss our republishing of the Register of Members’ Interests online last week. It is not expected to meet again until August when Parliamentary sittings resume. In the meantime, the Registrar for the Committee of Privileges and Members’ Interests is arranging to send the full Register of Members’ Interests to OpenAustralia. We’ll then transcribe these entries, many of which (at least in the sample volume) are forms filled in by hand. The pages are however sparsely filled which makes the whole enterprise look much more manageable. The first step will be digitizing all the pages, which we’re hoping will involve a friendly neighbourhood bulk scanner. Step two may be a couple of passes, typed entries we hope will run through some OCR software, and then we may well be asking for some volunteers to help with the handwritten entries. Look out for an update soon!

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One Comment

  1. Posted July 2, 2008 at 8:54 pm | Permalink

    I’m willing and able when you need help.

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