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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 2 Hansard (9 March) . . Page.. 549..


MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

process. Use ACT Policing to the best of their ability to assist you. Do not take a blind bit of notice to whatever Mr Pratt says on community safety.

MR PRATT: I ask a supplementary question. Minister, why do you insist on claiming 60 extra police when, in fact, you have suffered a net loss of 31 sworn police? Can you explain to the Canberra community why you are not taking their fears seriously?

MR HARGREAVES: I will address the last question first. I do take the concerns of the community-

Mr Pratt: You don't demonstrate it.

MR SPEAKER: Order, Mr Pratt!

MR HARGREAVES: I do take the concerns of the community particularly seriously, to such a degree that I have fortnightly meetings with the Chief Police Officer and we talk about a range of issues.

Mr Pratt: That will fix it.

MR HARGREAVES: I will fix you in a minute. The opposition can rant and rail as much as they like about numbers. Mr Pratt, I think, has the record for asking the most questions on notice around this particular subject of policing and emergency services. He has done absolutely nothing with the information. He has tied up a full-time officer in ACT Policing-

Mr Smyth: Any chance of answering the question?

MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Smith!

MR HARGREAVES:-when that officer could have been better employed out there in the community. He has tied up probably one and a half full-time officers in emergency services who could have been better employed out there doing the very things-

Mr Smyth: Any chance of answering the question?

MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Smith, I called you to order a moment ago. I am not going to be ignored.

Mr Smyth: On a point of order: the minister must answer the question with relevance. The question was: why have you allowed a net loss of 31 officers, which the minister ignores. Perhaps you might direct him to answer the question.

MR HARGREAVES: On the point of order: I am getting to it, so just have a little patience, please. I know you did not have any patience yesterday when your voice went up a couple of octaves. Just sit there and wait.

MR SPEAKER: Just address the point of order. Across the chamber conversations are not very helpful.


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