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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 8 Hansard (14 August) . .

Page.. 2586..


management, but there is still more work to be done. The new water-sensitive urban design guidelines that will come out of this review document will assist in that very important work.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Ms Berry.

MS BERRY: Minister, what other initiatives are in place to improve the health of our waterways?

MR CORBELL: I thank Ms Berry for the supplementary. Of course, the other big, critical element of this is, as I mentioned earlier, the $85 million funding program in collaboration with the commonwealth. The project, as members would know, is focused on a range of subcatchments across the ACT. I am very pleased to say that we are moving ahead with the implementation of this program and this funding agreement with the commonwealth. We are about to finalise the awards of the first tenders under the project to facilitate the data gathering and monitoring regime required of us by the commonwealth. We have done that in conjunction with the commonwealth. We are also exploring opportunities for early interventions as part of this program, as I have said that we will, because these are opportunities that can and should be pursued if they stack up, in terms of their potential viability in outcomes. If that can be included as part of the monitoring regime, the government is very keen to pursue that.

Bushfires—preparedness

MR SMYTH: My question is to the Minister for Territory and Municipal Services: regarding the four positions in the forestry and fire management unit, you stated on Tuesday that:

My advice is that four positions in the forestry and fire management unit are occupied with suitably qualified and experienced people, including all senior management positions.

Minister, is it true that of the four positions in the fire management unit one member has just gone on six months' leave, one member has just gone on one month's leave and one member is currently not working in the unit, leaving only one permanent member on duty?

MR RATTENBURY: As I indicated to Mr Smyth in my answer on Tuesday, my advice—and I have checked this recently—is that the unit is functioning and delivering the preparations for this coming fire season, including the elements of the bushfire operations plan it is required to. I do not have the specifics that Mr Smyth clearly does on what the staff movements are in that unit, but I am more than happy to follow that up.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Minister, have any of the positions been backfilled?


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