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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 4 Hansard (2 May) . . Page.. 851..


Mrs Burke: How arrogant.

MR TEMPORARY DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order!

MS GALLAGHER: Well, you are. You are a social menace. The report was commissioned by the Liberal government, I suspect under the riding instructions of "how do we wind back concessions when we are re-elected in 2001?"That report will come forward with four options, which I have already explained to you-I have given you the background. The government did not agree with any of the four options because they were all phrased in a budget neutral sense, which actually is a nicer way of saying they were all around winding back a concessions program, and that was not what this government was after. In fact, if you look at what this government have done you will see that we have introduced more concessions. In 2004 there was a new energy concession to cover both electricity and natural gas-this was in respect of a strange situation which had arisen-to make sure the rates of concession for gas and electricity were the same. So we have been moving on concessions.

Mrs Burke, what we are talking about here is a piece of work that the government did not agree with. There is no conspiracy here.

Mrs Burke: Just table it then.

MS GALLAGHER: Well, as I have told you, I would if you were not going to race around and put fear and loathing in the community, which is exactly what you would do. There are other options open to you. I am not tabling that document. I have explained to you that the government do not agree with the document that was produced. We did not pursue it. We have gone our own way in dealing with concessions.

Dr Foskey has offered a way forward in terms of having a current look at concessions and providing a report to the Assembly in December. I think the government's position on this is strong. We have a way forward. We are trying to work with the Assembly. But when we do so Mrs Burke gives the speech that she has prepared for the next motion. She did a bit of cut and paste and made that speech in respect of the matter now before us because she cannot think on her feet and see that the government is being entirely reasonable in offering a way forward.

Mrs Burke tells us how conciliatory she is and how prepared she is to work with everyone. However, I think it is sad that the minute we offer a way forward, Mrs Burke talks about conspiracies and hiding and all the rest of it. It is just ridiculous. She has turned a good way forward into a negative situation. However, we will pursue the work that Dr Foskey has requested. I think it is a good way forward and I am sure the Assembly will be very interested in the information when it is made available at the end of this year.

DR FOSKEY (Molonglo) (4.04): I will take this opportunity to respond to both of the amendments and to close the debate-assuming that that is okay with everyone. First of all, I have to say that, although I am prepared to accept Ms Gallagher's amendment, I am glad that I moved my motion. I believe that the work that Ms Gallagher's office


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