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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 13 Hansard (Wednesday, 1 December 2021) . . Page.. 3997 ..

others or maintaining your culture and language—makes Canberra home and a community. So I say thank you for all your efforts over the year.

I would also like to thank OLA staff for helping this wet-behind-the-ears MLA find his feet. To Hansard, the attendants, the tech support, chamber support, the committee secretariat and the wider ACT public service, you are essential to our democracy, and how appreciated you are is not said enough; thank you.

I would also like to thank members of my staff—Deb, Kat, Aileen and Alex—for all your hard work over the year. We established an MLA office and learnt how to do it together. We have come a long way. I also wish Kat all the best in her new role with the New South Wales Greens in the new year.

I would like to say thank you to all the Greens staff in this building, the ACT Greens and members of the local Yerrabi team. I also thank all of the colleagues in this chamber. Finally, and most of all, I thank my long-suffering family, without whose support I could not be here. So to all, I hope you have a good break and we can come back to a better 2022.


MR STEEL (Murrumbidgee—Minister for Skills, Minister for Transport and City Services and Special Minister of State) (4.50): I begin by thanking the Canberra community and my constituents in Murrumbidgee for their resilience and the support that they have provided to others in our community over the past year, including through a world-leading vaccination drive that has been incredibly fantastic to see. I have never been more proud to represent my community.

Whilst it has been a disrupted year full of online meetings, I am looking forward to engaging more directly and in person next year. There is a lot to talk about. We have really started the new term running, getting on with the significant agenda that Labor took to the election, which is now underway—evidenced in the PAGA progress report—as well as at the same time managing the COVID-19 pandemic response.

You only have to stand in Woden—as I did this week, turning the sod on the new interchange—to see evidence of the massive amount of work that is happening not only there but right around the city. Both on small and large infrastructure projects and in service delivery there is a huge amount of work going on.

I thank the Chief Minister and cabinet and my Labor and Greens colleagues for their comradeship as we continue this progressive agenda into next year. Canberra really has seen the value of government in the emergency response and the hard work our officials, both elected and unelected, have been doing, whilst at the same managing the ongoing services and implementing a significant reform and infrastructure agenda this year.

All staff across government deserve a huge thankyou for their often exhausting work throughout this year, during the COVID-19 pandemic, from the bus drivers who have been keeping essential workers moving throughout the city to the city presentation

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