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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 7 Hansard (6 August) . .

Page.. 2086..


MS GALLAGHER: Without knowing of the review and any other details about it at this point in time, I cannot answer that. It would seem very unlikely if that was the case that I would not know about it if it was commissioned into unexplained deaths.

Transport—light rail

MR COE: My question is to the Chief Minister. On 10 June 2014, the Canberra Times reported that "Chief Minister Katy Gallagher has drawn a line in the sand on the Gungahlin tram project, saying cabinet will not support a cost substantially beyond $614 million, adjusted for today's dollars." Chief Minister, when was the $614 million figure for light rail calculated?

MS GALLAGHER: I would have to check my records but I think it would be in the 2011-12 year.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Coe.

MR COE: Chief Minister, what is the cost, then, of light rail when calculated in 2014 dollars?

MS GALLAGHER: That work is currently being finalised for the information of cabinet, so it is not a figure I can provide you with today.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Hanson.

MR HANSON: Chief Minister, at what dollar figure will the government abandon light rail?

MS GALLAGHER: I think Mr Coe quoted from the Canberra Times, which was in relation to a question I was asked by a journalist about what was the tolerance of cabinet in terms of the total project cost. Obviously, costing light rail is a very important part of the project. There is a lot of work underway at the moment in terms of finalising the final business case that will come to cabinet. Cabinet will look through all of that information, the details of that information, as we have been doing at every stage of the project, to make sure that the costs are reasonable, that they are affordable and that they are in line with industry benchmarks for similar projects where cost comparisons can be made.

One of the issues for the cabinet, if the project proceeds to the next stage, will be finalising the financing arrangements and going through that process. That may include private sector support. Details of those negotiations, when and if they happen, and how we can project the cost to the community in terms of that figure, remain to be resolved. Those decisions have not been taken.

The government is rock solid behind this project, just as you are rock-solid opposed to it. There is an enormous amount of work underway to make sure that the decisions


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