Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2000 Week 2 Hansard (29 February) . . Page.. 354..
MR CORBELL: I ask a supplementary question. Will the Chief Minister confirm that the Government was simply far too generous in its dealings with the Raiders and other major hirers of Bruce Stadium and that as a consequence the Territory is exposed to higher payments than were absolutely necessary?
MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, that is a hypothetical question, and it is absolutely untrue. It is very important to go back to what the $1.3m is. It is a maximum payment. Even last year, when the crowds were reasonably low and the Raiders were not doing very well, the amount that was paid was nowhere near that. That would be a maximum payment if nobody turned up and we did not hire any corporate suites or sell any naming rights. The figure comes down from there, based upon attendances, corporate sales, naming right sales, and sales of food and beverages at the stadium.
As members who have looked at the contracts would know, there is only commitment, at the most, to five years. After that the last four or five years of the contracts are with no guarantee. We would assume that the Raiders would get to the break-even point a long time before that, at which stage there will start to be a clawback of the money that the ACT Government has already paid. That means that in the later years we can recoup money paid in the earlier years. That was not the case with the old agreement that the previous Government had with the Raiders, which gave the Raiders access to all of the revenue from everything, with no clawback provision at all.
One could say that the chances are that the deal we have will be significantly better than the one the previous Government had. By providing the assurance we did we guaranteed that the Raiders would be in the new competition, with the significantly fewer teams that are involved. That certainly was not the case with Adelaide, Perth or other cities that have lost their teams. I am very proud of that.
MR HIRD: Mr Speaker, my question is to the Attorney-General, Mr Humphries. Has the Attorney's attention been drawn to the comments made by Mr Simon Corbell about the performance of the Government in relation to requests for information under the Freedom of Information Act? Are these claims accurate? How does this Government's record compare with that of its predecessor?
MR HUMPHRIES: Thank you very much for that question, Mr Hird. Yes, I have seen Mr Corbell's comments on the freedom of information record of this Government. I would like to quote him. He said:
The FOI statistics provided in ACT department and agencies 1998-99 Annual Reports reveal the addiction to secrecy that surrounds the operations of the Carnell Government.
He went on to claim that 44.7 per cent of requests resulted in only partial release of documents, to prove that this Government clearly was addicted to secrecy. Let me make a few observations about those matters. First of all, what Mr Corbell fails to mention is that, whereas 44.7 per cent of requests resulted in partial release of documents, a greater