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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 4 Hansard (25 March) . . Page.. 1542..


MR STANHOPE (continuing):

application or expression of interest that it received on the merits of that expression of interest or representation.

MR SPEAKER: A supplementary, Mr Coe?

MR COE: Yes, Mr Speaker. Chief Minister, given the block, or the site, in Gungahlin does seem to be far more appropriate, having inspected it, in what sort of time frame can the Canberra Muslim community expect to get their building underway if it is indeed approved?

MR STANHOPE: The time frame, to a significant degree, will depend on the proponents—the decisions that are taken. Normally it would be a range of studies in relation to any site where there is a proposed development. There will be a number of studies in relation to this site around such things as traffic and the fitness of the site for the purpose. Really, it is a question I cannot answer. We have a very rigorous and streamlined process. It is a new process in relation to the assessment of applications for direct grant. It is a new process that is rigorous. We run to time lines and it will be progressed as quickly as circumstances allow.

Carer support services

MRS DUNNE: My question is to the Minister for Disability, Housing and Community Services. Minister, on 12 and 14 November 2009, you answered questions about the ALP government's election commitment to provide $800,000 over four years for grandparent support services. On 17 November, you provided the Assembly with advice that funding would be made available in varying amounts to a number of ACT organisations and that:

... procurement process for these services is currently underway and is expected to be finalised early in 2010.

On 12 March I wrote to you about this answer, questioning its accuracy and asking you to check the actual process of procurement and its current status and report back to the Assembly as necessary. Minister what is the status of the procurement for grandparent support services? Has the procurement been finalised and, if so, when was it finalised and what was the outcome of the procurement?

MS BURCH: I thank Mrs Dunne for her letter that I have carried around with me, waiting for her to ask about it, rather than wait for a reply. But in reply, Mrs Dunne, the department has commenced industry consultations post the budget announcement. This consultative process, this consultation, has engaged a range of industry representatives who provide support, advocacy and programs to kinship carers. The industry consultation is a necessary initial part of all procurement processes to gain a holistic approach and understanding of services and ensure the full participation of community stakeholders.

The consultation has proved to be complex and original time lines have been delayed to allow stakeholders to be in a position to engage fully with the proposed procurement process. Kinship carers, by definition, are not a single group. This extended time has been taken to be able to provide a comprehensive understanding of the needs of these kinship carers. The anticipated next stage of the procurement


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