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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 12 Hansard (21 November) . . Page.. 3620..


Questions without notice

Dragway

MR STEFANIAK: My question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, prior to the last 2004 ACT election you promised to start work on an ACT dragway after that election and you promised to complete the dragway by April 2006. Your government allocated $8 million for the development of the dragway. In 2004 I understand you received a report that noted that Wakefield Park in Goulburn was being considered as an option for an ACT dragway. What work has been undertaken to evaluate the Wakefield Park option for a dragway? What work has been done to evaluate utilising land adjacent to the Wakefield Park for a dragway? And what, if any, funds have been spent on these evaluations?

MR STANHOPE: I would be more than happy to be of what assistance I can but, as I presume Mr Stefaniak knows, my colleague the minister for sport is responsible for the dragway. I am happy to take the question on notice if Mr—

Mr Stefaniak: We can ask him.

MR STANHOPE: I am just trying to determine why it is that you did not ask the relevant minister.

Mr Smyth: It's your problem; you're the Chief Minister.

MR STANHOPE: If you want me to answer, I am happy to do it. If you don't want to address questions to the relevant minister, I am happy to take it on notice but if you would like an answer—if this is not some bit of devilish sort of political mysticism—

Opposition members interjecting

MR STANHOPE: that I just cannot quite grasp. I am trying to think on my feet here—you know, these trick questions on tricky issues. My colleague the minister for sport, the responsible minister, has been working assiduously on meeting the legitimate expectations and hopes of the motor sport community for a dragway—a policy that the government continues to pursue with vigour in the face of a range of very, very complex and difficult issues, leading amongst them a continuing reluctance by the federal Liberal government to treat seriously with the ACT government the identification and provision of land, having, of course, in concert with Brendan Smyth and the previous Liberal government, abandoned without consultation with any justification the then existing dragway. Never forget: it was Brendan Smyth and the Liberal Party that abandoned a perfectly good dragway that the ACT had.

Mr Speaker, I will ask my colleague the minister for sport, the relevant minister, to respond more specifically to the issues around Wakefield.

MR BARR: I am pleased to advise the Assembly that my department is undertaking discussions with the owner of the Wakefield Park lease. I understand that that owner also has an adjacent block that is zoned for motor sport facilities. The possibility of a


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