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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 12 Hansard (20 November) . . Page.. 3889..


MR BERRY: Mr Speaker, I would not be shocked. So that I do not upset the precious little petals, I withdraw any imputation that they find might offend them. But this unsatisfactory arrangement has undermined the outcome of the community consultation. Minister, what did you do to prevent this little arrangement from undermining the community consultation on the future of the school you closed?

MR STEFANIAK: He is utterly unbelievable, is he not, Mr Speaker? He is absolutely unbelievable. What arrangement? What deal? What are you talking about, Mr Berry? It is absolute nonsense. It is absolute lunacy.

Mr Berry: "Shonky" seems to be the thing you are most frightened of.

Mrs Carnell: Mr Speaker, I ask for that interjection to be withdrawn.

Mr Berry: Mr Speaker, I said that "shonky" was the thing they seemed to be most frightened of, and that is quite apparent.

MR SPEAKER: Just a moment. Earlier, I asked Mr Wood to withdraw the word "shonky", and I am asking you to do it now.

Mr Berry: I make no imputation, Mr Speaker. I will withdraw it. They seem to be wilting.

MR STEFANIAK: He is incredible! In terms of what arrangement or what deal - indeed, if he wants it, in terms of lease purpose clauses and the Charnwood Tavern - he had better ask somebody else about that, because that certainly is not my area. Mr De Domenico or Mr Humphries might be able to help him there. But, in terms of this particular process, Mr Berry, I will be quoting from - in fact, I think I will probably tender it - a press release from Mr De Domenico in relation to the high school site and also shortly I will read from a document in relation to that. But, just in relation to this particular process, we will take a few points one by one.

The first is the closing of the school. Mr Berry, I think it is common knowledge that you and your colleagues sat there, through 31/2 years of government, while the Charnwood High School went from about 640 kids down to about 275, and you did absolutely nothing about it, unlike this Government, which is prepared to do things when schools seem to get into a bit of trouble and which actually has a ministerial advisory committee looking in great detail at, and involving members of the community in, what to do when school enrolments do change. They are coming up with some very good things which, I think, will help our system very much indeed, including such things as the colleges specialising in certain subjects and actually coordinating activities - something that your Government never did, Mr Berry. So, let us not have any more of that absolute crap about Charnwood High School.

Let us now look at the consultation. Your Government was not exactly known for being a very good consultative government. In fact, Mr Berry, I think that is probably one of the big reasons why at the 1995 election you got only about 30 per cent of the vote and we got about 41 per cent of the vote. There has been a significant amount of consultation


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