Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2013 Week 6 Hansard (9 May) . . Page.. 1829..
advised that work has already commenced on the development of the next ACT road safety action plan under the ACT road safety strategy. This will address issues affecting vulnerable road users.
On the basis that any consideration of these issues by an Assembly committee will contribute to the process, I support Mr Rattenbury's motion. I commend the work of his directorate in improving road safety through the provision of reduced speed limits in our town centres in areas with high levels of pedestrian and cyclist activity.
Having said that, Mr Assistant Speaker, I have circulated an amendment. I have had a conversation with some of our committee members and also Mr Rattenbury, and some of our committee members will be putting in quite an effort during the estimates period. We believe that would soak up some of the time of this inquiry, and combined with our belief that the inquiry will be quite robust, we would like to extend that to April next year. I now move my amendment:
Omit the words "report by the last sitting day in October 2013", substitute "report by the last sitting day in April 2014".
MR COE (Ginninderra) (11.42): For a government that is seeking information on road safety, we have certainly heard a lot about what they have done and what they are going to do. It seems to me this may well be more about politics than it is about a genuine inquiry. We have also heard from the government, from Minister Corbell, about all the work that JACS has done and is doing. In fact, as we speak they are doing an inquiry into road safety and are having workshops with experts as they prepare their road safety strategy. We also heard from Mr Rattenbury about all the different ideas that his directorate already has and many of the initiatives they are currently implementing.
We heard mention of Pedal Power, the NRMA, the Motorcycle Riders Association, and the Pedestrian Council. These organisations have never been shy in coming forward with ideas. There is no shortage of ideas out there about how to improve road safety in the ACT. In fact, one of the things the Motorcycle Riders Association regularly talk about is the installation of wire rope barriers, which they say are, in effect, cheese graters for motorcyclists. And what is this minister doing this week? Installing one on Parkes Way. It seems to me there is a certain degree of irony whereby you have the government saying, "We need to have an inquiry into road safety,"yet for years and years the Motorcycle Riders Association have been saying, "Don't do this. Don't do this. Don't do this,"and this week a driver along Parkes Way will see the installation of wire rope barriers.
How genuine can this inquiry be when Minister Rattenbury in his speech talked about all the things we should be doing? He also spoke about the 40-kilometre-an-hour zones which were implemented last month. If he were genuine, surely that decision would have been referred to the committee for consultation. I think this is more about politics than it is about a genuine inquiry.
The opposition will take any opportunity to talk about road safety. The opposition sends hundreds of letters to the responsible ministers about road safety issues,