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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: Week 9 Hansard (18 August) . . Page.. 3846..


MR QUINLAN (continuing):

write off; bringing on to the books a very substantial amount of stormwater assets, I think. Overall, yes, at the end of the day, it is my decision that we should take the opportunity to write off that accumulated superannuation liability out of last financial year.

I have since heard the Leader of the Opposition saying that it was some sort of adjustment of convenience and that it might have been to hide money that might be spent in election campaigns. Let me assure you that the election campaign and the figures that we will be assessing in terms of your commitments, Mr Smyth, will relate to the budget that we have on foot at the moment. If you have a problem with that budget and you want to challenge it, I invite you to do so. But please remember the difference between windfall gains as opposed to regular consistent revenue flows that you can depend on to fund commitments that you make that it is assumed will go beyond your first year in office, should you attain office.

This is a process of saying, "Yes, the territory books are in good shape. We have suffered a qualification from the Auditor-General for a couple of years."Why would we want to do that again and have you ask me a question about that? Instead Mr Smyth is saying, "Are the books crook because they've been qualified by the Auditor-General?"At least they will not be qualified by the Auditor-General in relation to superannuation adjustments for the last financial year.

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, I have a supplementary question. Treasurer, why did you alter the operating result to take account of the adjustment for the superannuation account, when in April this year you stated unequivocally that you would not make this adjustment during the current financial year?

MR QUINLAN: I do not recall making an unequivocal statement. Mr Smyth, you have an inclination to embellish what I said or might not have said. I will check on what I said.

Chief Minister-telephone records

MR PRATT: Mr Speaker, my question is to the Deputy Chief Minister as the minister responsible for InTACT. Minister, as well as administering the government's IT system, InTACT manages telecommunications. Notably, InTACT also manages the mobile phone accounts of executive members, including those of the Chief Minister. As you will be aware, the Chief Minister's failure to respond to critical phone calls on 17 and 18 January is a matter of great concern to the community. Did you, or your office, ask InTACT for copies of the Chief Minister's phone records for 17 and 18 January 2003?

MR QUINLAN: Mr Speaker, that question is typical of Mr Pratt. It says there was a failure to respond; it says they were critical phone calls. He does not know that. He says this is a matter of great concern to the public. Mr Pratt, in that question you are very much embroidering a situation. I think we went through this yesterday. You do not expect me to answer a loaded question such as that, which you have embroidered to the point where it cannot be answered. It is a non-question now because it has three unproven presumptions in it which are, in all probability, false. I am sorry; I cannot answer a question based on falsehoods.


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