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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 8 Hansard (5 August) . . Page.. 2845..


MR STANHOPE (continuing):

Belconnen Way to Glenloch interchange by a duplication of the GDE at that space. That advice was provided to the minister on 20 June and I table it for the information of members. (Time expired.)

Canberra Symphony Orchestra

MR MULCAHY: My question is to the Chief Minister in his role as Minister for the Arts and relates to the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. Chief Minister, the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra is funded by the federal government to the tune of around $5 million to $6 million each year. By contrast, the Canberra Symphony Orchestra receives just $100,000 from the commonwealth. What representations have you made to your federal counterparts to increase the amount of funding to the Canberra Symphony Orchestra?

MR STANHOPE: I thank Mr Mulcahy for the question. I have, over time, made a number of representations in writing and orally to respective ministers for the arts in relation to the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. Mr Mulcahy indicates the position of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra particularly by comparison to the Tasmanian orchestra. It is relevant to compare the Canberra Symphony Orchestra and its commonwealth funding with that of Tasmania because of the respective sizes of our populations—Tasmania, with a population of 480,000, rushing to 500,000 with its little spurt of growth, and the ACT, with a population of 340,000. The disparity in commonwealth funding for our symphony orchestras is quite stark.

I have made representations. I would have to take some advice and look at the record in relation to written advice, but I do not think I have missed an opportunity, at ministerial council meetings with respective commonwealth ministers for the arts, to raise the issue of the lack of commonwealth support for the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. It is something that the government has pursued, with no great success, and it is something that we will continue to pursue.

I acknowledge it is a serious issue and deficiency. The national capital of Australia should have a full-time, professional symphony orchestra. Of course it is one of our aspirations and something we would love to see.

Gungahlin swimming pool

MR SMYTH: My question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, yesterday you re-announced your 2004 election promise to build a pool in Gungahlin subject to a feasibility study. Since the election, that pool has not been built. Why should the people of Gungahlin believe that you are going to deliver on your promise this time?

MR STANHOPE: At the time of the 2004 election, the Australian Labor Party promised this: "The Australian Labor Party will reserve a site for a pool in Gungahlin for development when the population reaches the appropriate size."We promised to reserve a site for a pool for development—

Mrs Burke: When is a pool not a pool? When it's a site.


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