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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 6 Hansard (13 June) . . Page.. 1608..


MR SMYTH (continuing):

Minister has made it quite clear, both in his meeting and in the letter to ACT Tennis, what was required.

Federation Line Incorporated

MR KAINE: My question is to the Chief Minister. The other day I received a very interesting letter from the Federation Line Incorporated about a proposal to build a tourist line in Canberra. I guess I was not the only member to receive it; I am sure that everybody else did. On the face of it, it looks like an interesting proposal. I do not know whether it is, because that was the first piece of information I had seen about it, although I am told in here that we have all been briefed. But that is not within the purview of the Chief Minister.

The thing that attracted my attention was that in the fourth paragraph the letter refers to social benefit and cost, financial modelling and business plan studies and says, "Thanks to the assistance of the Chief Minister's Department, ActewAGL, Canberra Tourism and Events Corporation and PALM, these studies are under way and will be completed in a few weeks."

Chief Minister, I am interested to know the extent to which those government agencies are assisting this private sector organisation and how much public money has been spent so far on providing assistance to this organisation for its social benefit and cost, financial modelling and business plan studies.

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, perhaps I should take that one. Members might be aware that in the lead-up to the federation celebrations there was a call for submissions on spending federation funds. One of the submissions put forward by the ACT government-by the then Chief Minister, Kate Carnell-was for a federation tram extending from the War Memorial along Limestone Avenue, down Ainslie Avenue, through Civic and ultimately across to the National Museum site. Unfortunately, it did not receive funding.

One of the dilemmas for the new museum is that, as we predicted, there is a lack of car parking space. I think we have all experienced that. The museum is making use of shuttle services, which are working very well, but there is a need for a long-term solution; hence, the resurrection, as it were, of the federation tram. I would have to get details of each of the amounts that Mr Kaine has asked for, but would be pleased to do so.

MR KAINE: I have a supplementary question, Mr Speaker. While you are taking that question on notice, Minister, will you also discover from which part of the ACT budget this money is being provided, because I cannot recollect any reference to this project in either last year's budget or the one for the upcoming year? I would like to know not only how much is being spent but also where the money is coming from.

MR SMYTH: I will certainly take that question on notice for the member as well. Within each of the departments there is room for studies and, as it becomes apparent through the year that we need to do studies either to further a project or to halt a project, they are funded. I will find out for the member the details that he has asked for.


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