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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 5 Hansard (30 May) . . Page.. 1193..


MR STANHOPE (continuing):

I do not believe that to be the case. It is a responsible provider. It is responsible to the ACT government as a half owner. In partnership with the ACT government it will join in ensuring that we can achieve the aims that we need to achieve in relation to a genuine effort to reduce greenhouse gases within the ACT. We are not great emitters. We have a large ecological footprint, certainly, and we need to address that. We need to accept our responsibility, as significant consumers of power, to do all that we can to reduce our reliance on electricity. These are issues that will be addressed in detail in the climate change strategy that I will shortly release.

Schools—closures

MR SESELJA: My question is to the Minister for Education and Training and it relates to the sale of school assets. The ACT ALP 2005-06 platform in relation to government primary schools, high schools and secondary schools states at page 54 that the Labor Party will:

Ensure that the proceeds of any government school assets sold are retained by the education system for the benefit of students.

On 10 May 2006 I asked you whether you would comply with the provision of the platform and you told the Assembly:

I believe that to be a very sound principle. Yes, we would comply with that.

On 18 May this year your colleague Mr Hargreaves said at a media conference that all revenues from disposing of school sites would go into consolidated revenue. Minister, do you stand by the ALP platform and your statement to the Assembly on 10 May 2006 and will you ensure that any proceeds from government school assets sold are retained in the education system?

MR BARR: Yes, I do stand by the commitment I gave to the Assembly. The government is investing a record amount of money in public education. I thank Mr Seselja for raising this issue again; it provides me with the opportunity to provide the Assembly with some more information around the level of the government's investment in public education.

The significant reform process that the government went through in 2006 provided the opportunity to reinvest the largest ever amount of money into public education in the history of this parliament. No other government has ever invested as much money as this government is going to—has already begun doing—in public education. Some of the projects Mrs Dunne has consistently described as throwing good money after bad.

Mrs Dunne: You don't know why you're doing it. You still don't know why you're doing it.

MR BARR: Let me begin by asking: is providing the new hall at Chapman primary school throwing good money after bad?

Mrs Dunne: Is that keeping people in the system? We don't know.


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