Page 2155 - Week 07 - Thursday, 29 June 2023

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Mr Barr has outlined in his amendment, the ACT still comes out one of the worst in the country. There has to be some reason for that and that is what I am hoping will spur the Auditor-General into looking into it. There has to be a reason why we have the highest number of political appointments. So let the Auditor-General find out.

Mr Braddock mentioned why did I not write myself, which obviously is open to any MLA. I am pleased to say that, because of the calls-ons being almost identical, I am happy to support these calls-ons in Mr Barr’s amendments and the amendments themselves, because to me that adds to the weight of the argument for the Attorney-General to take this on board.

Mr Barr: I think you mean the Auditor-General, don’t you?

MR CAIN: Yes, the Auditor-General. If I had just written—well, maybe I would have an influence, but if we all are going to agree, that is even a stronger message, is it not, for the Auditor-General?

I do want to though step through why some of the changes Mr Barr has proposed are made. His first amendment is to (1)(b) of my motion, and he is removing the bit that says these appointments, as described by the Grattan report, are almost always linked to the party that was in government when they got the job. I note that Mr Barr’s proposed (1)(b) takes that phrase out. I wonder if it hurts too much!

The second amendment is to delete (2)(c). I am possibly not being as pleasant as Mr Parton has chosen to be, because I like my motion. I just like it, you know? Can I not fight for my motion? I just like it. I am going to stand for the things I like. How is that! I actually think it reflects the spirit of it more closely. What Mr Barr is not comfortable with in my motion, and this comes straight out of the Grattan report, Madam Speaker, is:

The ACT has the equal-highest most politically affiliated Government Business Enterprise board members from the same side of politics as the government that appointed them, all of whom are or were affiliated to ACT Labor.

Just pointing it out. That is an uncomfortable paragraph, for some reason. That is an uncomfortable paragraph for the Chief Minister. Maybe he can explain why he is not comfortable with that paragraph, because it actually just describes the reality.

Then there is the longer amendment, which does include the same call-ons as in my original motion, and that is appreciated. The longer amendment basically describes the process. On behalf of the Canberra Liberals, I will be supporting Mr Barr’s amendment to keep those calls-ons, to hopefully make a persuasive argument as much as we can as Assembly members. This Assembly will agree that we want the Auditor-General to really look into this. Perhaps the processes are okay but we will let him find out. I would certainly like him to see if he can find an answer to why we have the worst outcomes in the country, despite the processes. I will be supporting Mr Barr’s amendments.

Amendments agreed to.

Original question, as amended, resolved in the affirmative.


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