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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 7 Hansard (30 June) . . Page.. 2894..


MRS DUNNE (continuing):

Now this announcement delivers another 110 places. That is an incredible increase in the childcare places to best serve the families here in the ACT.

Mr Smyth: Incredible!

MRS DUNNE: "Incredible"is probably a good word, Mr Speaker. Minister, will you now acknowledge that you misled the Assembly in your statement in May when you said that another 110 places would be provided by the refurbishment at Flynn primary school?

MS BURCH: I did come down last night, Mrs Dunne, when you were nowhere to be seen. You have issued a media release in which you asked me to do exactly what I did last night. This budget has committed $4 million to deliver childcare places at Flynn, up to 120 places. We have now finalised negotiations and we have agreed that Gumnut and Alkira will move into Flynn. In February Mrs Dunne was calling on me to secure accommodation for Gumnut and now she is complaining that I have secured accommodation for Gumnut.

Mr Seselja: On a point of order, Mr Speaker—and it goes to direct relevance—the minister was asked a specific question: whether she will acknowledge that her May statement was misleading. It is very simple. She can talk around it as much as she wants. It is a direct question. She has had more than a minute now. I would ask her to be directly relevant to the question as to whether the statement she made was misleading.

MR SPEAKER: I believe the minister is in the process of answering the question. There is no point of order. Ms Burch, you have the floor.

MS BURCH: Thank you, Mr Speaker. I go again to the statements I made last night where Alkira and Gumnut combined provide for a licence of 97 places. There is room for them to grow.

MR HANSON: Did you or did you not mislead? That is the question.

MS BURCH: The commitment for 110 childcare places for Flynn remains. That is what this government has delivered. Also, as part of that answer back in May, I indicated that we were earmarked for 450 new childcare places to come on line. Recent advice to me from my department, this morning, has said that indeed we will be closer to delivering 530 new childcare places this year. That is indeed an increase of 80 to what I had said. I think any increase in childcare numbers for the families of the ACT would be welcomed by the families of the ACT. I do not understand why it is not welcomed by the opposition.

Mr Hargreaves: Supplementary, Mr Speaker?

Mrs Dunne: No, I have the supplementary question, actually.

MR SPEAKER: Sorry. Mrs Dunne has a supplementary.


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