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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 9 Hansard (21 August) . . Page.. 3040..


Mr Humphries: Is that the question?

MS TUCKER: No. I am clarifying that.

Mr Humphries: It is almost right but it is not quite right.

MS TUCKER: Thank you. I am assuming that that is close. Apparently, it is not far wrong. My question is: in the view of the ACT government, is this appropriate notice to be given to you by the board of Actew to make a very important decision on behalf of the ACT community and expend public money?

MR HUMPHRIES: In answer to the last part of the question, no, it is not. That in part contributed to the reason the cabinet was reluctant to make a decision, substituting itself for the Actew board, to have Actew invest more money in TransACT.

Let me make it clear that in early May I did speak to members of the Actew board about the need for additional investment in TransACT. They spoke about their need to raise more finance, and they indicated to me that they wanted to do so and that they wanted to have my views on that matter. I indicated that that seemed to be an appropriate thing but that the government at that stage was unconvinced that it needed to put more direct government money into the TransACT venture.

I understood from that meeting that they were going off to speak to shareholders about obtaining additional investments from shareholders, which is ultimately what has happened. At the end of June, when the incident to which I referred in an earlier answer arose, there was advice from Actew, with somewhat greater urgency about it, indicating that a decision about additional finance needed to be made quickly and imminently to deal with what appeared to be an immediate problem with the obtaining of finance. That is the matter we were expected to make a decision about within a short space of time. My recollection is that it was one or two days.

Workers compensation premiums

MR OSBORNE: My question is to the Chief Minister because it is a question for Mr Smyth but he is not here. Minister, several months ago I moved a motion which limited the workers compensation premiums for group training companies to 15 per cent of their wage bill. I am not sure that that motion was passed unanimously, but it was passed. I have been informed recently that the effect of this motion has not yet been implemented and notified in the Gazette. Could you clarify this for me? If the change has not yet been implemented, could you give a reason as to why not?

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, no, I cannot. I do not have information about that in front of me. I will take that question on notice.


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