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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 2 Hansard (4 March) . . Page.. 846..


(1) The Canberra Connect call centre operates from 8 am to 8 pm Monday to Friday, and 9 am to 5 pm on Saturdays. Telstra provides an after hours service for Canberra Connect at all other times.


In the period January 2002 to January 2004, the activation of the after hours service for Canberra Connect has failed on only two occasions, 13 January 2004 and 22 January 2004. Canberra Connect has upgraded its switching capabilities and supporting procedures to minimise the risk of any recurrence of this problem.

Welcome Back Cotter event

(Question No 1255)

Mr Smyth asked the Chief Minister, upon notice, on 11 February 2004:

In relation to the Welcome Back Cotter function on Australia Day:

1. How many residents attended this function;

2. What was the cost to the ACT taxpayer of hosting this function;

3. From where in the budget did the funds come from to pay for this event;

4. Why was it decided to hold this function on Australia Day and not another day;

5. How were funds made available for this event, but not for Australia Day in the National Capital to organise local activities to celebrate Australia Day?

Mr Stanhope: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

1. The final attendance at the event was estimated to be in the vicinity of 5,000 to 6,000 people over the four-hour period.

2. The total cost of hosting and promoting the event was $25,736.68.

3. The budget was allocated from the Chief Minister's Department.

4. The ACT Government staged 'Welcome Back Cotter' to celebrate the reopening of the Cotter Reserve and in particular the bridge and playground built to replace those lost in the 2003 bushfires. For decades the Cotter has been much loved by Canberrans - especially in Summer - as a place for families to escape the heat and the city and to enjoy nature so close to suburbia.


In light of the enormous pressure placed on permanent and temporary facilities on the day, the overwhelming public feedback received by staff and volunteers was extremely positive in regards to both the Cotter Reserve and the staging of the event.

5. In 2003 the ACT Government opted not to offer financial support through its 'Festivals Fund' to the particular proposal by 'Australia Day in the National Capital' (ADNC).


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