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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 3 Hansard (3 April) . . Page.. 948..


Schools—closures

MRS DUNNE: My question is to the Deputy Chief Minister. Yesterday in the Assembly you apologised for an unauthorised comment made by a spokesperson from your office regarding school closures in 2004. During 2005 the same spokesman made a number of comments about the government having no plans to close more schools other than those in west Belconnen. I quote from the Canberra Times of 26 July 2005:

A spokesman for Education Minister Katy Gallagher said the Government had no plans to close more schools in Canberra.

Minister, were these other comments unauthorised as well, or did you deliberately instruct your spokesman to make these comments in order to hide your real plans to close more schools?

MS GALLAGHER: I made my position clear yesterday in the debate on the Towards 2020 proposal.

MR SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mrs Dunne?

MRS DUNNE: Minister, how long has it been your practice to allow unauthorised comments to go uncorrected in the media, especially the comments made on 26 July 2005, which you did not address in your comments yesterday?

MS GALLAGHER: It is not my practice.

Environment—waste management

DR FOSKEY: My question is to the Minister for Territory and Municipal Services and concerns the level of waste being diverted from landfill. The minister recently stated in the media that with a few new measures it should be possible to increase our recovery levels to 85 per cent. What measures has the minister taken to ensure that this happens?

MR HARGREAVES: We have a range of initiatives in place. As Dr Foskey would know, we have a range of things which highlight people who are doing a particularly good job in this regard. I refer, for example, to REECO Australia in Fyshwick. We have been going around to other businesses and talking to people about their recycling opportunities and trying to get those businesses to emulate the sorts of things that REECO are doing.

We spend extensive amounts of money on advertising campaigns. We have education programs in the schools. I wish to acknowledge the presence of one of the best education ministers since self-government. I note that it was in fact schools which changed a lot of our attitudes to recycling back in 1995, with their waste watch with respect to paper recycling. Our No Waste awards highlight the achievements of businesses and their activities, be they government, construction, demolition, the retail sector or the education sector. We put those in the media for the express reason that we wish to show the rest of the community how well it can be done.


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