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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 2 Hansard (9 March) . . Page.. 604..

MRS DUNNE (continuing):

suppose I will continue to see some of them at least at the Wig and Pen after their departure.

A few other people have left here. Ken Wilson, from the ABC, has left to go back home to Townsville. I would like to wish Ken, who was here for 61/2 years, good luck, along with Sarah, Liam and Charlotte. Also, Ben Doherty is going off to the Spencer Street soviet today, I think. He was here for a shorter time. I know that on one occasion at least he was called intrepid. I think he is an up-and-coming young journalist. He has scored a few marks around this place with particular front pages. I think that the Quamby one is one that he holds particularly close to his heart. I wish both Ken and Ben Doherty success in the future.

The real reason I stand here today is that, like Ted, I am a very fortunate member in having loyal staff stay a long time. Kate Vaughan will be leaving in a couple of weeks, to some extent at my beckoning, to look at greener fields. She is moving to the United Kingdom to work for some time. Kate is a true believer; yes, we have them on this side. She is a great and loyal member of the Liberal Party and she will be working on honing her campaigning skills with the Conservatives in the UK. I hope that she will bring her new skills back to Australia.

Kate is my longest serving staff member. She has been with me since mid-2002. She started as a student and has grown into the job, becoming my full-time supporter and general organiser. Kate is fiercely loyal. She holds very high standards of conduct and she has been a great political staffer in an environment in which trust and confidence are the highest currency. She has been, to me, a cross between a cheerleader, a nagger, a mum, a minder and an innovator, and she is someone that I could not clone. I am starting to regret that I encouraged her to look further afield. I will miss you, Kate. I will miss your smiling face. Good luck in the future.

Mr Ted Quinlan-retirement

MR SMYTH (Brindabella-Leader of the Opposition) (6.21): Mr Speaker, I rise to congratulate Mr Quinlan on his retirement. It takes a wise man to know when it is time to go, when it is time to push on. I think that Ted has made a number of decisions like that in his life when he has swapped careers. One of the changes brought him here in 1998, oddly enough at the same time as I came in, so we have served for the same length of time. I do not think that people appreciate the sort of challenge that it takes to go through the preselection process which all of us in this place go through and then, not on one or two but three occasions, face the public. In that regard, he is to be greatly congratulated.

His philosophy is not the same as mine, but you can always respect Ted because he does say it clearly and he does say it plainly. I think that that is something that, apart from the humour, some of us lack in this place. You always knew where you stood with Ted, except on one thing; that is, the definition of economic cycles. We have had some banter about where an economic cycle starts and where an economic cycle finishes. He reaches immediately for his chart. I have a more advanced textbook than he has and I actually have a better chart than his chart. It would appear that I am about to get a retiring gift. I hope it is true that he actually does know when economic cycles start and finish because, surely, in private enterprise the person who knows when things are going to turn is the person who is going to get the most reward and make the most bucks.

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