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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 3 Hansard (26 May) . . Page.. 564..


MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, I am more than happy to take that on notice. As I said, from a Government perspective, particularly in commercial areas, we regularly use external advice because that is not an expertise necessarily of the ACT Government. But we also use internal solicitors as well. I am happy to take it on notice.

Roadworks

MR KAINE: Mr Speaker, I have a question to the Minister for Urban Services. Minister, this year's budget, the budget ending 30 June, makes provision for just over $800,000 for the upgrading of the intersection of Erindale Drive and Drakeford Drive. That work, according to the budget, is to be completed this year. I drove through there within the last 48 hours and there is no sign that any work is ever to be undertaken there. Can you tell us when that work is to begin, and when do you expect it to be finished?

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, I thank the member for his question. I am aware that such work has been listed in the capital works for this year. I will have to find out a fuller answer for him as to when it is to start and when it will be finished.

MR KAINE: I have a supplementary question, Mr Speaker, and it relates also to the capital works program. Some months ago we received a significant sum of money from the Commonwealth for a black spot program. One of the black spots is the intersection of Monaro Highway and Tharwa Drive. We have had that money for some months. In this year's budget I see no reference even to the drafting of that project. In fact, there is no reference at all to it. There was another accident there yesterday morning. It is a black spot. We have had the money for months. When does the Minister expect that we might do something about spending the Commonwealth's money and rectifying that major black spot on our roads?

MR SMYTH: Thank you, Mr Kaine, for the question. Again, I will consult with the department and find out the timetable for that process, and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Visiting Medical Officers - Contracts

MR BERRY: My question is to the Minister for Health, Mr Moore. I gave Mr Moore some advance notice that I would be raising this issue with him. In the weekend paper, Minister, there was a report of a visiting medical officer being suspended for one month for the practice of charging a booking fee. You may recall that this practice came to my attention about five years ago, and to the attention of the Auditor-General. It led to the insistence that VMO contracts contain a ban on this practice. I am sure you agree that the uncovering of this predatory practice on vulnerable women is another sorry chapter in the delivery of obstetric services in the ACT. Regrettably, by association, it unfairly brings into disrepute many of this VMO's hard-working colleagues who run their businesses ethically. This morning's Canberra Times tells us that the doctor who was suspended


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