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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 6 Hansard (6 June) . . Page.. 1475..


MR STANHOPE (continuing):

government that seeks to expand its horizons and to recognise the opportunities to govern in a way that meets the needs of a community.

It is interesting that you can employ additional ambulance drivers and you can employ additional nurses without comment or commentary, because they are respected and recognised immediately, but another fundamentally important function of government, of the public service, that is, the development of policy, all of a sudden is dirty. "A policy office! For goodness sake, what do you want people to develop policy for?"

Ms Gallagher: The Liberals wouldn't need them.

MR STANHOPE: But then again, of course, across the board the Liberal Party would not need policy officers. We have seen the colour of a Liberal government. We saw it this morning when the shadow Treasurer indicated that a Liberal government would attack the $61 million overfunding of the Canberra and Calvary hospitals! You cannot with any credibility stand up at a significant function on budget day as the alternative government, presenting an alternative vision, and say there is $61 million of excess expenditure in our public hospitals and then sit down. You cannot with credibility say, "A Liberal government, confronted with this $61 million of overexpenditure for the Canberra Hospital, will cut it, will reduce it, will remove it, if not in its entirety, to this degree."But we do not see that. We see today a blank list. You do not need policy officers for that. The Liberal Party has decided, the shadow Treasurer has indicated today, that the Canberra Hospital and Calvary Public are overfunded to the tune of $61 million. He went on to say, "Why don't we replicate Queensland's funding base? Why don't we seek to achieve the outcomes that are achieved in Queensland?"He stopped one step short of saying, "Dr Death, brought to you by the Liberal Party of the ACT."He stopped one step short.

Mr Mulcahy: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. This is beyond the pale and I would ask you to direct the Chief Minister back to the matter on which I have questioned him.

MR SPEAKER: Come to the subject matter. The minister's time has expired.

Budget—tourism

MR SMYTH: My question is to the minister for tourism. Minister, in the 2006 ACT budget, the Stanhope government cut $3.5 million from the tourism budget, with a further cut of $1 million slated for the 2007-08 budget. In the 2007-08 ACT budget, it is unclear how the tourism budget total has been determined. Minister, what are the components of the $24.8 million that has been determined as the budget for tourism in 2007-08? What is included in the 6.158 that is listed on page 285 of the budget as "events"? Where were these funds transferred from?

MR BARR: I thank Mr Smyth for the question. I understand that Mr Smyth has been somewhat confused by the budget papers. I noted his comments in the Canberra Times this morning. These issues were raised at the tourism industry briefing that I held last night with the tourism industry. I am very pleased to advise the Assembly that, as Mr Smyth has identified, in the 2006-07 budget papers there was a separation


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