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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 2 Hansard (18 February) . .

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MR BARR (Molonglo—Chief Minister, Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Minister for Tourism and Events and Minister for Urban Renewal) (11.08): I am very pleased to nominate Ms Burch for the position. She clearly has the most experience of the two candidates in this place. Whilst Ms Lawder has many of the qualities that the departing Deputy Speaker, Ms Porter, has—and I acknowledge that she has performed well in the role as an Assistant Speaker—I am sure her time will come to be a Deputy Speaker in this place.

There is a long-held convention in this place that the Deputy Speaker will come from a different party from the Speaker and I think that ought to be respected. In this instance Ms Burch not only has an edge in experience in this place over Ms Lawder but also an edge in talent and ability at this point in their respective careers. Whilst I acknowledge that Ms Lawder will one day quite possibly be elected Deputy Speaker of this place, that day is not today.

MADAM SPEAKER: There being more than one candidate proposed for election as Deputy Speaker, we will proceed to a ballot.

A ballot having been taken—

MADAM SPEAKER: Standing order 2(g) requires that members write one name on the ballot. Somebody has put in a preferential vote and therefore it is an invalid vote. Therefore we have a tied vote. On the advice of the Clerk, we are going to do it all again. I reinforce to members that standing order 2(g) asks members to write one name, their preferred candidate, on the ballot paper.

A further ballot having been taken—

MADAM SPEAKER: The result of the ballot is: Ms Burch, nine votes; Ms Lawder, eight votes. Therefore, Ms Burch, the candidate with the majority of the votes present and voting, is declared the Deputy Speaker.

Weed management

Ministerial statement and paper

MR GENTLEMAN (Brindabella—Minister for Planning and Land Management, Minister for Racing and Gaming and Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations) (11.17): How appropriate it is, after Ms Porter's valedictory this morning, to make a statement on weeds across the territory. As members are aware, the Assembly resolved on 18 November 2015 that the then Minister for Territory and Municipal Services should report back on the progress of the delivery of the 2015-16 environmental weeds program.

Madam Speaker, in this current financial year the ACT government will provide over $1.5 million towards the program of environmental weed control. To date, TAMS has expended $440,000, or just over 30 per cent, of its total budget in the control of weeds. This money enables the control of weeds in many of the territory's protected areas, including Namadgi national park, Tidbinbilla nature reserve and Canberra nature park, as well as other sensitive areas such the lower Cotter catchment.

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