Page 2981 - Week 09 - Wednesday, 12 October 2022

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different choices that we are making. I would just like to echo his sentiments. I would really like to thank people for the hard work that they are doing to address these potholes.

Our roads do take a lot of work. They are expensive. They require a lot of maintenance. In the 2022-23 financial year the government is expecting to spend around $286.8 million on road maintenance across the ACT. This is a really big, ongoing job. There are a lot of careful and expert decisions that we need to make along the way. We have got around 5,900 kilometres of road in the ACT, and in my office we worked out that that is about $50 per metre of road per year in maintenance. Usually we have some of the best roads in the world. It is pretty uncommon to see potholes, which I think is why we are reacting so strongly to them at the moment. Our roads are maintained to a really high standard, and we are doing the best we can in the weather conditions at the moment.

I drive around a bit, but I ride around quite a lot and you are bit closer to the road. You see the conditions really, really easily when you are on a bike, I think. So I see firsthand the punishment that our roads are taking from heavy vehicles and high-volume traffic. I am really glad that we have the resources that we have for maintenance. It is incredibly important that we maintain our assets. I also would love to see more resources going into some of the measures that help to get more people off our roads, because that will actually also help with the maintenance, particularly as we move forward. We are likely to see more of these—I should not call them unusual—quite extreme weather patterns, and the less damage we can cause to those roads the better.

I would like to echo what has been said already. We have got some really hardworking staff. We have got some good strategies going to deal with this situation. I am pleased to see that happening and I would encourage it to keep going on. We know there are no magic solutions here. This is a big problem, and we are doing that work. I am pleased that we have information available on the website on how to make a claim. It is really, really good to know that that information is available. On the basis that that information is already readily available, I am not sure that we particularly need the second amendment. So the ACT Greens are happy to support Minister Steel’s amendment in its original form.

MR MILLIGAN (Yerrabi) (4.43): I want to thank Ms Lawder for bringing this important motion to the Assembly. There is a pothole plague amongst us, you could say.

Ms Castley: Potholes aplenty.

MR MILLIGAN: Potholes aplenty. They are at every turn. They are at every intersection. There are even potholes outside this building right now. They are inescapable. Some of them, I think, you could almost call sinkholes. It feels like I am playing a PlayStation game just dodging these potholes. There are plenty out in the streets. In August more than 200 potholes were reported, with an average of 52 days for those cases to be fixed. That is a lot of potholes and it is taking far too long to have them rectified. You see a lot of potholes reappear after the next bout of rain. It is just extending and extending, pothole after pothole.

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