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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 9 Hansard (21 August) . . Page.. 2543..


Lanyon Valley-availability of doctors

MR PRATT: My question is to the Chief Minister, Mr Stanhope. During the Estimates Committee hearing of 29 July you said:

There is nobody who cannot get to see ministers, and there is absolutely nobody who cannot get to see me. It may be that they wait a little bit longer than they think is desirable.

In the Tuggeranong Chronicle of 13 August, Rosemary Lissimore, chair of the Tuggeranong Community Council, regarding their efforts to have you speak at a meeting about the availability of doctors in the Lanyon Valley, said:

The houses are still being built and families are still moving into this area, yet we are still waiting for the Minister to find time to come and hear the concerns of these residents first hand. We do know that the Minister will be attending a meeting at the Southern Cross Club on August 20 at 10.30am: maybe we can arrange a meeting for a future time on that day. We do not expect miracles but if the people concerned can hear first-hand how the Labor Government are trying to assist the people of Tuggeranong, it might show them this Government cares.

The Tuggeranong Community Council has been seeking a meeting with you on this issue since February, which is six months. Does your failure to find time to meet with the Tuggeranong Community Council on this issue indicate that the availability of doctors in the Lanyon Valley is a low priority for this government?

MR STANHOPE: Was that all a quote from Ms Lissimore, or was there a question from you at the end of it?

Mr Pratt: There was a question. I gave you everything I needed to give you, Chief Minister.

MR STANHOPE: I was just not sure where the quotes ended. I was not aware of Ms Lissimore's comments. The extent of her disappointment had not been drawn to my attention.

MR SPEAKER: You should read the Chronicle.

MR STANHOPE: Yes. I must have missed that edition of the Chronicle. I regret that, and I will probably be flayed to death for that admission. I had not read that edition of the Chronicle, and I was not aware that Ms Lissimore was upset with me. I have to say that I was not aware that there was an outstanding invitation for me to attend.

MR PRATT: I have a supplementary question. Chief Minister, are you prepared to give a commitment to the people of Tuggeranong that you will meet with them by the end of October? If not, why not?

`

MR STANHOPE: I am not aware, other than through what you have just read from the Chronicle-esteemed journal though it is, and I have no reason to doubt anything contained within its pages-that Ms Lissimore has extended to me that invitation.


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