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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 5 Hansard (9 May) . . Page.. 1425..


MR CORBELL: Yes, Mr Speaker, I certainly can. ACTION are doing a lot of very positive work at the moment to increase community knowledge and understanding of the services they provide. That is important because, without that information, people simply may not realise that a bus service operates near them and is convenient for one or a number of journeys that they take on a regular basis.

ACTION had undertaken a letter box drop of all the new timetables in all the areas where there had been changes to the route services. It is a good prompt, not only for the people who are using the services already but also for those who perhaps haven't used the service or haven't used it for some time, to let them know there are improvements in the service and, again, another prompt to encourage people to use public transport.

ACTION has also distributed timetables through the interchanges. They are available at the Canberra Connect shopfront, ACTION ticket agencies and the ACTION website. It is a very comprehensive response.

I think the point to be made here, Mr Speaker, in conclusion, is that ACTION is continually working to improve its level of service, to focus services in areas of need and to respond to increased demand in particular areas. That is why the additional services in Gungahlin, in particular, are significant and that is also why it is important to communicate the change as well to the ACTION travelling public.

Tax rates

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, my question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, in your reply to the budget speech on 26 May 2000, you stated:

We need a government that will focus on delivering quality services and low tax rates.

Do you stand by your view that the ACT government should deliver low tax rates? Given that your Treasurer said yesterday, in this place, that the threshold for payroll tax might not rise as scheduled, how will you deliver on your promise to the ACT community?

MR STANHOPE: Mr Speaker, the government will deliver on all the commitments it has made to the people of Canberra. We will provide a government of integrity; we will provide a government that is honest; and we will provide a government that is in touch with the people of Canberra. That is essentially what we have promised, along with a whole range of specific election commitments.

My colleague the Treasurer has explained the situation in relation to payroll tax in the budget. Indeed, there are a whole range of initiatives and issues that we are considering in the budget context. Every government does that at this time of year and that is as you did. In relation to that, we are not going to rule anything in or out at this stage. They were exactly the same circumstances when you were in government.

It is an absolute nonsense to come here and ask, "What are you doing in the budget?" The budget has not been put to bed; we are still actively considering it; we are forming it; we are meeting, often and long, to discuss it and to make decisions around a whole range


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