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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 2 Hansard (17 February) . .

Page.. 499..

MR BARR: That is one of the more offensive insinuations that have been made in this place. It is borderline unparliamentary, suggesting corruption. Those opposite, and particularly Mr Wall, are skating on thin ice there. I suggest that he would not want to repeat that allegation outside of this place.

ACT Policing—resourcing

MR DOSZPOT: My question is to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services. On 3 December 2015, the Canberra Times reported "ACT's front-line police officers under pressure from spending cuts". The article stated that the AFP federal police union has warned that officers in the ACT have been stretched as job losses and ongoing spending cuts begin to take a toll on front-line employees. The AFP Police Association warned that more than 40 positions could be lost after ACT Policing was ordered to glean more than $15 million of savings from its budget over four years from 2013. The AFP Policing annual report 2015 stated that property crime, armed robbery and motor vehicle theft had risen. Minister, what are you doing to ensure that front-line police services are not cut from ACT Policing?

MR CORBELL: I thank Mr Doszpot for the question. The government is very clear that in any part of government service delivery there is an expectation that we will achieve efficiencies in service delivery. When you look at the contract for ACT Policing, which has a value of over $100 million per annum, it is reasonable to expect that a very modest level of efficiency dividend can be achieved from that organisation.

Indeed, AFP national—that is, the national arm of the Australian Federal Police—has been subject to an efficiency dividend now for well over a decade. So the ACT has taken the view that we do expect efficiencies from the delivery of policing services and it has been the consistent position of me and my predecessor, Ms Burch, that those efficiencies be achieved in back office and support areas, not on front-line operational capacity.

MADAM SPEAKER: Mr Doszpot, a supplementary question.

MR DOSZPOT: Minister, if ACT Policing is properly funded and resourced, why has property crime risen in the ACT?

MR CORBELL: Property crime statistics move around from quarter to quarter, and the most recent quarter does indicate an increase in some elements of some crime types. But it would be worth also observing that, if you look at the long-term trend over the past 10 years, there is less armed robbery, burglary, breaking and entering, and car theft now in the ACT than there was 10 years ago. That is despite the fact that our population has increased very, very significantly over the past decade. So there is less crime now than there was 10 years ago despite a significant increase in population. That speaks to this government's record on reducing crime in our community.

MADAM SPEAKER: Supplementary question, Mr Hanson.

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