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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2012 Week 6 Hansard (9 May) . . Page.. 2284..


symphony orchestra should be treated equitably with the other symphony orchestras of Australia. I also think it is important to pass that because this is something we actually could change. We actually could get some more money for the music community in the ACT if there was a more equitable distribution of funding to the Canberra Symphony Orchestra. I note that is something the Canberra Symphony Orchestra have been concerned about for a long time.

There is not a lot we can do about the ANU; it is an independent organisation and, clearly, it has its own issues. Clearly, we do not totally agree with the direction, so I think this motion is important. I support Mrs Dunne's motion, but I think it would be significantly improved by my amendments.

MRS DUNNE (Ginninderra) (5.53): I would like to propose that Ms Le Couteur's amendments be divided. There are two amendments—one is to omit and substitute and another is to add. What we are seeing here today is an outbreak of unanimity on this issue. Both Ms Burch and Ms Le Couteur have proposed words to be added to my original motion along the lines of that in Ms Le Couteur's proposed paragraph 1(e). The reason I am proposing that we divide the question is that I think there is unanimity that that paragraph should be inserted. However, my staff have discussed this with both Ms Le Couteur's office and Minister Burch's office, and while we agree wholeheartedly with the sentiment proposed in Ms Le Couteur's proposed new paragraph (4), I do not think that this is the time or the place to have that discussion.

I would welcome a discussion in the Assembly about funding for the Canberra Symphony Orchestra, but it is my view that the current debate is about the School of Music. Yes, the Canberra Symphony Orchestra will be adversely affected if the changes go through, but writing to the federal arts minister is slightly tangential to the intent of the motion. If Ms Le Couteur brought back a motion of this sort at another time, I would support it, but I would prefer not to have it in this motion today because I think it detracts from the motion. That is not to say it is not something that does not have merit.

I propose we divide the questions. The Canberra Liberals will be happy to support the first amendment, which is to omit paragraph 1(e) and substitute 1(e) and 1(f). Paragraph 1(f) is substantially the same, but I think it is slightly better wording than mine, which talks only about impacts. There could be positive impacts. I think the general feeling in the community is that there are negative impacts, and we should reinforce that. I think that is good.

As I have said before, we will not be supporting the second amendment, not because we think it is unmeritorious but because it is not the right place. In anticipation, the Canberra Liberals will also be supporting Ms Burch's revised amendment, which adds subparagraph (g) to this and acknowledges the $1.4 million that the ACT government provides to the ANU to support the School of Music, which I think shows how much interaction there is between the two communities and how much we should value them.

I know there is a desire to go home fairly soon, so I will conclude my remarks on this motion by thanking members for their support of this important motion. It is nice to


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