Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2022 Week 09 Hansard (Wednesday, 12 October 2022) . . Page.. 2983 ..
MS CASTLEY (Yerrabi) (4.48): I echo all of the words so far and I thank Ms Lawder for bringing this motion to the Assembly. I think the big word for me is neglect—overwhelmingly. Reports have hit my inbox from lots and lots of people, not just in Yerrabi but in all electorates. Canberrans believe that the government is ignoring the basics. It is just not getting it right. They are unhappy—wild—and have turned to humour, as Ms Lawder pointed out. I had a meme sent to me yesterday where someone was offering to take people on a trip to Tasmania. This pothole looked like a map of Tasmania, where you could go fishing and drop in a line. Things are bad.
Someone in Forde has measured a pothole there. It is 600 mm. That is a big one, right? That is going to interrupt even the biggest of tyres. And this is not in a spot where you can swerve. You literally have to scooch yourself up the footpath to avoid this pothole. It is just not good enough. We all shell out great money in rego. We deserve so much better than this neglect that we are seeing at the moment.
As Mr Milligan pointed out, the Jabanungga issue has been going on for years. It would have started as a pothole. I invite everyone for a Sunday drive, for everyone to pop out there and have a look. I have never seen anything like it. The asphalt nearly comes up to my thigh. The hole that was there—it has recently been filled, in the last few days—would have been big enough for a small car to pitch into and not be able to get out. These are the concerns that people in our electorate have, as Mr Milligan pointed out.
For those people who have contacted my office, this is our moment to shine. I am going to name every suburb that people has contacted me from. We have Harrison, Giralang, Kaleen, Mitchell, Nicholls, Forde, Ngunnawal, Casey and Amaroo. I am sure there are more. I could add more of the ones that I have simply driven around. We go with Bonner and Moncrieff, and nearly every other suburb. They are the ones that I have had numerous letters about.
It is a disgrace. That is why I support Ms Lawder’s motion. I do not really need to take any more time, other than just to comment that there was even a letter to the editor today from someone in Canberra saying:
It’s not as if the increase in rates comes with any increase in services. Quite the reverse in fact. Instead, potholes are not fixed, grasslands are overgrown to the extent they can’t be used (unless you are a horse or a kangaroo) and health services, the education budget and public housing have all declined.
That is just from today. So thank you, Ms Lawder. I applaud your efforts and fully support this motion.
MR CAIN (Ginninderra) (4.52): I would like to pass on a recommendation to the minister for a new hashtag for his department, for his approach to road maintenance: #potholesRus. I think it might take off. “Us” being Canberra, unfortunately. From having the best roads in the country a while back, surely we have amongst the worst. Given our place as the capital of this great country, it is a disgrace that the city of Canberra, the capital of Australia, is in such neglect. So I rise to support Ms Lawder’s motion and to support also the comments made by Mr Milligan and Ms Castley.