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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 3 Hansard (15 March) . . Page.. 681..


DR FOSKEY (continuing):

ANU, CSIRO, Greening Australia, Invasive Animals CRC and the Canberra Ornithologist Group. There are issues there as they do their development. For instance, they drain wetlands and there is an impact on a lot of the wildlife, in this case the long-necked turtle, which spends a lot of time going in a straight line between wetlands and ponds and does not know anything about roads, is much the same colour as our asphalt roads and is very frequently squashed. I did suggest that their shells be painted with fluorescent yellow paint but it was decided that would not be very appropriate.

This is an initiative that the ACT government is a partner in and one that is really exciting. I would like to hear more about it from our minister but I have got a feeling that after that briefing last night I might know a bit more about it than even he does.

Emergency services

MR PRATT (Brindabella) (6.14): Mr Speaker, I rise to address a couple of issues relative to the debate earlier today. But, before I do that, I take this opportunity to echo the sentiments expressed by Ms MacDonald and Dr Foskey about Morgan Tsvangirai and the condition that he is in. Yes, it is very important that MLAs do whatever they can to raise that concern. While this world is so much more focused on other highly political issues, which perhaps are not as important as the Darfurs and the Zimbabwes, I guess we can look on, powerless.

I want to address a couple of issues raised by the Greens today in the debate on the no-confidence vote and to correct the record. Dr Foskey said that she had been told this morning that the opposition had decided last night to run a no-confidence vote and therefore why did we not advise her earlier than we did. But that is not the case; we did not decide to run a no-confidence vote last night. This morning, when we began to get an understanding that the brigades and units would be coming in to Civic and to the Assembly, we thought that perhaps we should think about doing that, but we did not make that decision really until after 10 o'clock, outside in the square in a group huddle. After we were absolutely aware of the gravity of the rebellion, we made that decision. So, Dr Foskey, we could not have spoken to you before then.

As to Dr Foskey's concerns, she was a bit critical of the poor old opposition here this morning. I thought perhaps she was a little too much in free-kicking mode for the government. She said in her presentation this morning that she had only begun the conversation with the volunteers, and I find that rather disappointing—

DR FOSKEY: I said why didn't they talk to me as well as you, Mr Pratt.

MR PRATT: She wondered whether she should be talking for the volunteers. In fact she should have been talking for the volunteers here today—

DR FOSKEY: I was.

MR PRATT: There has been sufficient information and evidence around in the last couple of weeks for any MLA in this place to have formed an informed opinion on exactly what the circumstances are. So I am quite disappointed that Dr Foskey chose not to join the no-confidence vote. There was sufficient evidence available, sufficient


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