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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2015 Week 11 Hansard (24 September) . .

Page.. 3514..

MADAM SPEAKER: I am sorry, I do not think it is an announcement of government policy. I thought the government had already announced that it was doing it. I think Ms Lawder was asking you when you would be doing what you said you had already done. It is not out of order. A supplementary question, Ms Lawder.

MS LAWDER: Chief Minister, why has the government continued to ignore the recommendations of the estimates committees that, as a priority, the government establish a single nature conservation agency in order to better integrate policy, planning, research and management?

MR BARR: The government has responded to the estimates committee on more than one occasion.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Minister, why have you been unable to persuade Minister Corbell and Minister Rattenbury to agree to establish a single nature conservation agency?

MR BARR: I reject the premise of the question.

MADAM SPEAKER: A supplementary question, Mr Smyth.

MR SMYTH: Chief Minister, why has the government not complied with its undertaking to establish a single nature conservation agency as set out in your parliamentary agreement with the Greens?

MR BARR: We have not.

MADAM SPEAKER: Before I call the next question, Dr Bourke, could I just make the point that members in this place do not determine whether a question is in order or out of order; the presiding officer does. If ministers do not quite like the question, they can answer it in any way they see fit within the standing orders, but it is not the role of ministers or any other member to say that a question is out of order. You can take a point of order on the subject, but the ruling is made by the presiding officer.

Health—drug and alcohol programs

DR BOURKE: My question is to the Minister for Health. Minister, can you update the Assembly on the extent of substance abuse in the ACT and the funding provided by the government to deal with this issue?

MR CORBELL: I thank Dr Bourke for his question. In 2010 the ACT had the third highest prevalence of recent illicit drug use of all Australian states and territories—17.9 per cent compared to a national figure of 17 per cent. Between 2010 and 2013 treatment episodes for amphetamine use as the primary drug increased from 196 to 496 occasions. We are facing some very significant challenges when it comes to the use of drugs like ice in the ACT. We know more people than ever before are also seeking treatment for these addictions.

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