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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 14 Hansard (12 December) . . Page.. 4495..


MR STEFANIAK: It is more than a scrum. There are quite a few backs here as well, Ted. I will do that at some stage.

I thank my personal staff, my colleagues-those in my own party and everyone else in the Assembly-and their staff. To you, Mr Speaker, go congratulations on your new role. It might have been difficult for you and you might have been a bit wary of it, but you have handled it very well. I have appreciated working with you.

To Mark, Tom and all the staff of the Assembly I say thank you for your continued assistance. I have been here longer than most, and it never fails to amaze me just how competent and efficient the Assembly staff are. My thanks to you all.

To my own staff I give my special thanks. Having been a minister for 61/2 years, this year I have appreciated getting back into committee work, especially on the legal committee with Kerrie Tucker and John Hargreaves. It has been a lot of fun. We do not always agree, but I thank you for the year.

Everyone have a safe and merry Christmas. Come back next year. We look forward to getting back to business then. In the meantime everyone should have a good break. You deserve it. It has been a great pleasure to work with you this year.

Christmas card competition

Valedictory

MS MacDONALD (9.56): Those of you who have wandered past my office in the last couple of weeks may have noticed that I have had a Christmas card design competition. The entries are in my window. I am happy to say that the winners have been picked. I would like to congratulate Adrian Sissian from St Thomas the Apostle, Rachel Youakim from the Trinity Christian School and Rachel Cartwright from St Anthonys Primary for their winning entries. You will all see the beautiful designs when you get a Christmas card under the door. I was particularly pleased to run this competition this year based on the theme of peace. I think there is a need for us all to be focusing on that theme, with all the events of the last 12 months or so.

Mrs Dunne alluded to the fact that Australia is still mostly a Christian nation. I do not fit into the category of Christian, so I wish the entire Assembly happy Hanukkah for the week before last. I went to the Hanukkah festivities the Saturday before last. I managed to avoid eating the latkes, which is just as well, because they are deep-fried. Brendan, my husband, enjoyed them greatly, but he likes all things deep-fried.

In response to Mr Humphries' effort last year in finding us all a patron saint, I was considering finding us all a Jewish rabbi, but I did not think I would be able to pronounce some of the names or find suitable attributes. It might have become a bit heavy after a while.

I thank all MLAs, especially my party colleagues, for their support in their own inimitable style. I appreciate that. I also thank the secretariat staff, Hansard, the library and many others who have been mentioned.


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