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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2016 Week 8 Hansard (9 August) . .

Page.. 2523..


Exhibition Park is not fit for purpose for many events. The annual Royal Canberra Show has one of the largest horse competitions in Australia but the stabling at the grounds is unsafe and unsuitable. Facilities are almost non-existent. No money is forthcoming from this government to do anything other than minor upgrades: new toilet blocks, and some drainage, but little else at that particular venue, despite the fact that events like the Canberra show bring millions of dollars into Canberra, just as the annual Summernats and folk festivals do.

Stromlo Forest Park has been the lucky recipient of a number of improvements, and the equestrian facilities are significantly better than they once were. But given that it is the nature of this government to take land at a moment's notice and given that they will need to find more buckets of money if they want to continue their light rail folly, if I were a member of the equestrian fraternity I would be very worried that centrally located land like Stromlo Forest Park—and even Exhibition Park, sitting as it does on the light rail corridor—are prime suspects for takeover. In Exhibition Park's case, that would explain the chronic neglect.

The Civic pool, strictly speaking, is not a venue under the economic directorate definition of such, but it is also victim of this government's grand plan, or grand malaise. It is suffering from neglect and age, but nothing will happen there until the city stadium dream can be delivered. Given the time it has taken just to fiddle with Constitution Avenue, building a stadium would take at least two lifetimes.

Then there is the controversy about the Barr government's so-called unsolicited bid for the upgrade to Manuka Oval, which has had the Manuka, Kingston and Barton communities up in arms over several aspects of this proposed project, including the Barr government's refusal to listen to the community. Now, a matter of eight weeks or so before the ACT elections, the Chief Minister has done another Barr flip over this issue, but only because of community pressure has he done this.

The arrogance of the Barr-Rattenbury government is finally being recognised by the Canberra community. Their common refrain is, "Roll on 15 October."

MR BARR (Molonglo—Chief Minister, Treasurer, Minister for Economic Development, Minister for Tourism and Events and Minister for Urban Renewal) (5.40): I thank members for their contribution in this part of the budget debate.

The Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development Directorate leads the territory's public sector and works collaboratively both within government and with the community to achieve positive outcomes. The directorate was formed in recognition of the continued focus on creating a one-government approach to the delivery of services to the people of the ACT, one with the critical importance of ensuring that economic development is at the centre of government policy deliberations.

Those with an interest in history would note that this structure is option A as recommended by Allan Hawke in his 2011 review of ACT governance. For those who


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