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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2013 Week 4 Hansard (20 March) . . Page.. 1181..


MR DOSZPOT (Molonglo) (5.57): I was quite heartened to hear Mr Rattenbury's comments, because his comments actually reflect what I have heard from the athletics community—that is, in short and just taking the salient point, the athletics community would like a synthetic track but they would like it in a location where it can actually grow to be a functional part of their community, where everyone can access it and they can use it for everything up to grand prix events. The best site for that, according to their own information, is at Stromlo.

I have received a number of emails. Mr Barr, I will start with one that was copied to me and that was actually sent to you. I will quote from it:

Dear Mr Barr,

I was extremely disappointed to read in yesterday's "Chronicle"$4.7 million was being spent on upgrading the Woden Little Athletics Field to a synthetic track. I do not oppose Woden having improvement undertaken on their track, but as this track is for approximately 400 children, the rest of Canberra's children who participate on Little Athletics tracks are running on substandard tracks.

So this person is saying that they would consider the money far better spent on all of the tracks around Canberra, the 10-odd little athletics associations, and that if it was a choice of a venue that was not capable of being used to the maximum then it would be better to spend that sort of money on upgrading all of the tracks around Canberra.

Mr Barr, I guess I am disappointed but not surprised at the approach that the government has taken to this motion today. I brought this to the Assembly in a genuine effort to get consensus, not to bag you. It has not been—

Mr Barr: Your whole speech was bagging me, Steve.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, no, it was not. It was certainly—

Mr Barr: It is hard to take you seriously when you read out prepared stuff from your staff that differs completely from what you actually think.

MR DOSZPOT: Through you, Mr Assistant Speaker, Mr Barr, the whole purpose of our motion today was to highlight the lack of planning and the lack of attention to detail. But I brought this in a genuine effort to get consensus from you, and I think Mr Rattenbury is starting to see—

At 6 pm, in accordance with standing order 34, the debate was interrupted. The motion for the adjournment of the Assembly having been put and negatived, the debate was resumed.

MR DOSZPOT: Mr Barr, I did not try to provoke division here but to get the best deal for athletics in this territory. We have a duty to keep you accountable, you as the government, that the money you spend, the taxpayers' money that you spend, you spend wisely. You have an extra duty as Treasurer and as Deputy Chief Minister to also ensure that the money you spend will be spent in the most appropriate way.


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