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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 10 Hansard (26 August) . . Page.. 4392..


MR STANHOPE (continuing):

Mrs Cross, have uttered time and again in the public domain, particularly on radio stations throughout Canberra. It has also been covered, I believe, on ABC television.

They are foul and vile defamations of me. They are lies; they are not true; they were never true. It is a very sorry example of the emotion that has been generated and the determination to seek petty political points against me in relation to the fire. It is a very sorry reflection on those who have engaged in these lies. I have denied them time and time again as not being the truth. For Mrs Cross to bring into this place on the last sitting day of this Assembly her tawdry little statutory declaration, her claims of the existence of photographs, is a sign of utter desperation, the most tawdry politics imaginable and something which we should reject absolutely as appropriate behaviour for this chamber.

I hope this is the end of the matter. If members in this place are not satisfied with Mr Mike Castle's statutory declaration, I am more than happy to receive similar declarations from Mr Peter Lucas-Smith, the rural fire controller at the time, and Mr Ian Bennett, the ACT Fire Commissioner at the time. This has been a most foul defamation of me, something that has caused me enormous personal pain. I have denied time and time again the allegations that have been made about me in relation to this. I hope this puts the matter to rest.

Crimes Amendment Bill 2004 (No 3)

Debate resumed from 19 August 2004, on motion by Mr Stanhope:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

Debate (on motion by Mr Hargreaves ) adjourned to the next sitting.

Civil Law (Wrongs) (Proportionate Liability and Professional Standards) Amendment Bill 2004

Debate resumed from 24 June 2004, on motion by Mr Stanhope:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR STEFANIAK (8.22): The opposition will be supporting this bill, which amends the Civil Law (Wrongs) Act 2002 to implement proportionate liability and professional standards in the ACT. It is a national scheme worked out by the Standing Committee of Attorneys General. It draws a lot from the New South Wales act, which has been in since 1994, followed by a West Australian one in 1997.

I am not going to regurgitate what the Chief Minister said. I will just say that we support this, and I may well have a few comments in the detail stage. The opposition will also be supporting the amendments moved by the Chief Minister, providing that those are the ones that were ticked off by the Law Society. I think I have been assured by his office that they were.

MS DUNDAS (8.22): Mr Speaker, the Democrats will be supporting this bill in principle. However, we have concerns about the second half of the bill, specifically the parts of the bill that relate to professional standards. This bill contains two different


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