Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2005 Week 14 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 4508..
MS GALLAGHER (continuing):
You would have to say that Mr Pratt or Mr Mulcahy must have been advising Mrs Carnell on an appropriate clause to put in an agreement like that. The clause stated, "You must agree on the first pay increase for the next agreement before this agreement expires."They must have known they were going to lose the election. They did not have to make provision for that pay rise or think about it any more than just putting a clause in an agreement which, I would not imagine, is in any other agreement anywhere across the country.
We had to meet the needs in the public sector, as we have, of pulling every public sector worker up to a reasonable standard of pay. We had to fund teachers appropriately, which we have now. We are going to the second round of bargaining.
What I am saying is that not only do we have our whole range of election commitments to fund but we have a whole range of other responsibilities in education which we meet as they arise. This government believes in appropriate funding of public education. We have shown that throughout the first few years of government, and we will continue to show that as we go through this second term.
ACTION bus service-airport
MR SESELJA: My question is to the planning minister. Can the minister confirm that he has received advice in relation to the viability of an ACTION bus service to and from Canberra airport? If so, what did the advice say about the viability of such a service and what action will the minister be taking in response?
MR CORBELL: Yes, I have received advice in relation to the viability of a bus service to and from the airport. I do not recall the figures. I would be happy to provide a briefing to Mr Seselja if he is interested. The issue of providing a bus to the airport, if I remember the brief correctly, is that, given the previous low levels of patronage, it would be difficult to justify. Even with the increase in employment that has occurred at the airport in the past number of years, we anticipate it would cost between $300,000 and $500,000 per annum to provide four services every weekday to the airport. If I recall correctly, those are the figures, which are substantial and which cannot be justified or afforded in the current context of the budget or of ACTION's operating arrangements.
The other difficulty is that it would involve the diverting of two buses from existing routes. You would need to have at least two buses operating at any one time on that route because of the length of the journey from the city to the airport and return. You could not use just one bus; you would have to use at least two to operate at any one time. I think that this highlights the difficulty with decisions being made on investment and development at the airport which are not consistent with the broader planning strategy for the city and how that impacts on the provision of services such as public transport, which is, of course, the issue that I continue to raise in this place and elsewhere.
To date, Mr Seselja has not really worked out exactly what the ramifications are of infrastructure investment decisions not happening in a coordinated way and consistent with the planning and development framework for the city. This is an example of how investment and development decisions being made outside the planning framework can put pressure on the taxpayer to subsidise the provision of services to areas which are not consistent with the overall development strategy for the city.