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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 1 Hansard (13 December) . . Page.. 238..


Latham Primary School

MR CORBELL: In question time today, Ms Dundas asked me a question about the level of support for learning support units at Latham Primary School. I have some further advice from the department that I hope will answer her question.

I am advised that there will be no reduction of support at Latham Primary School in 2002. Latham has two learning support units for students with autism. In 2002 12 students will be enrolled, which is the enrolment ceiling. There will be two teachers and two special teachers aids, provided through the staffing formula, and an additional teachers aid allocated to the school by the department to work across the two units. This is the same level of support as in 2001.

Personal explanation

MR HUMPHRIES (Leader of the Opposition): Pursuant to standing order 46, I seek to make a personal explanation.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: Please proceed.

MR HUMPHRIES: During question time the Treasurer almost went so far as to say that I had misled the community about two matters. One was the provision of money for the construction of a medical school; the other was the question of advice about a likely operating loss of $63.5 million.

In respect of the ACT medical school, the former government's position-and this was announced at the time of the general announcement about support for the medical school in June this year-was always that the capital cost of building the medical school, approximately $30 million, could be met through movements in the capital works program over the next few years, given that the construction program was to begin in 2002-03. It is available there, given that the size of the capital works program for this present financial year alone is over $200 million. Mr Quinlan will discover that there is plenty of latitude in a program that size to be able to accommodate $6 million or $7 million a year.

The second issue is the question of whether I had been advised, when Treasurer, of a likely loss of $63.5 million. I can confirm that no such advice was given to me in government and that, if Mr Quinlan cares to make available to me the papers of the former government, I can confirm that no such advice was provided.

Papers

Mr Stanhope presented the following papers:

ACT Criminal Justice Statistical Profile-September 2001 Quarter.

Health Regulation (Maternal Health Information) Act 1998-1 July-30 September 2001 Quarterly Report.


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