Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 6 Hansard (5 June) . . Page.. 1893..
Citizen's right of reply: Response by Mr Jorian Gardner pursuant to continuing resolution 4 and the resolution of the Assembly on 5 June 2014 that report 2 of the Standing Committee on Administration and Procedure—Application for Citizen's Right of Reply—be adopted
I refer to a sitting of the ACT Legislative Assembly, Tuesday 25 February 2014, that saw a motion of no confidence debate in Minister Joy Burch raised by Mr Jeremy Hanson, Member for Molonglo and Leader of the Opposition.
During the some two-hours or so of debate, I was the subject of personal attack and criticism on a number of occasions by some members. It was my role as Director of the Fringe Festival which was under scrutiny, an event that recently ran alongside the National Multicultural Festival and is funded through ArtsACT - arts and multicultural affairs both being portfolios of Minister Burch. It is clear to those who were in attendance at this extraordinary first sitting of the 2014 ACT Legislative Assembly or by any reasonable persons reading of the Hansard record that I, Jorian Gardner, have been the subject of clear, direct and personal attack and criticism and that my privacy has been unreasonably invaded by references made by some MLA's.
• Mr Hanson (MLA) refers to Minister Burch on several occasions: "she appointed the director without due process."".....The minister ignored due process and appointed Jorian Gardner as the director of the fringe.""......She funded this event from a public purse and she appointed the director without due process."
Ms Jones (MLA): "He was appointed without process.""...because it was the well-known modus operandi of the director who was given the job without due process."...There should have been an acknowledgement that this director, with a long litany of previous poor judgement, should not have been given this directorship.""...to a director known to the general community as having questionable judgement, and considered in the arts community as being poorly trained"
These statements and similar on the record are untrue and misleading. This implies there was something non compliant in my appointment. No laws or rules of ACT Government process were broken and even members of the ACT Liberal Opposition seem to agree therefore contradicting their own leader and other members on this point. I refer to a statement in this debate by Mr Brendan Smyth (Libs MLA) referring to Fringe in the ACT Government budget. ".. Funding was deliberately placed as a separate line item in the budget intended to allow for more flexibility in employing the director."This statement is correct and shows that it was the Minister and her department's right to appoint me. I have complied with an ACT Government Deed of Grant as with any other contractor to government in a similar situation. Any other individual and organisation also had the legal right to lobby the government for this appointment and the fact they didn't take advantage of this opportunity available to them should not reflect poorly on me because I in fact did. These
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