Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 9 Hansard (22 August) . . Page.. 3426 ..
We are pleased to be able to continue building the club sector, knowing the important role that clubs play in building a strong community.
Mr Parton has said that the clubs have as their core business poker machines. I was stunned to hear Mr Parton say that that is their core business. I always thought that the core business of the clubs was to support the community: the sporting groups, the ethnic and cultural groups and the broader community as a whole. We clearly differ. The people on the other side will decide that the core role is to maximise revenue that is coming from poker machines. That is not the view of the government. The view of the government is to make sure that we will support the clubs to move beyond a business model that is stuck in the past and build them for the future.
MR WALL: Minister, how many employees of licensed clubs are expected to lose their jobs as a result of new taxes and charges and continued increases to existing taxes, charges and rates?
MR RAMSAY: Again, I refer to my previous answer, which related to what the government is doing: building and helping the clubs be strong for the future so that their workers are secure by making sure that there is diversification available; and we will continue that. We will make sure that clubs are involved in that. We will make sure that workers are involved in that. One of the areas of the diversification fund itself—
Opposition members interjecting—
Ms Orr: On a point of order, we are barely into the answer to the question and the opposition has interjected the whole way through. I would like to be able to hear the minister's answer.
MADAM SPEAKER: It is difficult to hear the response to the question when there is that level of interjection. Minister.
MR RAMSAY: Thank you, Madam Speaker. I am pleased to be able to have some clear air to re-emphasise that one of the key areas for the diversification fund is to be able to support workers as they continue to build their skills and build their future employment as we make sure that the workers make sure that—
Mr Parton: On a point of order of relevance, the question was very clearly: how many employees will lose their jobs? We have got nowhere near that.
MADAM SPEAKER: I think it is referring to the general policy that was in the substantive question, which was about the changes and the impact on the taxes. I do not believe there is a point of order. He is talking in the broad sense.
Mrs Dunne: On the point of order, Madam Speaker, standing orders require that when a question is asked—and in this case the question was: how many employees of licensed clubs will lose their jobs?—then the minister must be directly relevant to that question, not the question that was asked two questions previously. Could I ask you to reflect on Mr Parton's point of order in light of the standing orders.