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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 31 May 1995) . . Page.. 630 ..


MR MOORE: I have a supplementary question, Mr Speaker. I am very pleased with the rather full answer that Mr De Domenico gave me. That could be due partially to the fact that I gave him a few minutes’ notice - not many, I might add - that I would be asking such a question. My supplementary question has to do with the comment you made, Mr De Domenico, about the complexities of laws and inconsistencies, and the fact that you have, basically, a business group looking into this issue at the same time that our Planning Committee does so. What is missing from the group that you have looking into this issue, Mr De Domenico, is general community participation. The time taken to deal with issues over the last few years has caused a great deal of anxiety in the community. I have suggested to you that the Planning and Environment Committee is looking at that legislation. Will you recognise that that is happening and ask that red tape task force to leave that area alone until after the committee has reported?

MR SPEAKER: I would remind members that questions are to be concise, or as concise as possible.

MR DE DOMENICO: Mr Speaker, I thank Mr Moore for his supplementary question, which, once again, is a very intelligent and well thought out one. The answer, Mr Moore, is yes. We will take that into account. I will make sure that the chair of the task force, Mrs Whitelaw, is in touch with you to make sure that she is aware of what you are talking about.

Government Service - Office Accommodation at Gungahlin

MS FOLLETT: Mr Speaker, I direct a question to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, when we were in government Labor adopted a policy of housing our public servants in owned rather than rented office accommodation, and we did that for a number of reasons: To provide jobs in the construction industry, for one reason; to save money on the rent in rented accommodation; and also as a means by which the Government could control the standard of accommodation that is provided to ACT employees. What advice have you received on the cost of building an ACT Government office block at Gungahlin, especially in terms of the long-term savings in rent that would be brought about by such government-owned accommodation?

MRS CARNELL: Whenever this Government, as with the previous Government as well, I assume, looks at accommodation for ACT Government employees, the important things are the quality of that accommodation and the cost-effectiveness of that accommodation in order to make sure that the ACT gets the best possible deal - not just in the short term, but in the longer term as well. That is one of the reasons why this Government will be going to whole of life costings on all of our new capital works programs.

At this stage no costings have been done on office accommodation at Gungahlin. There are a number of reasons for that. We will announce a decision on accommodating DELP employees in the next couple of weeks. The Gungahlin option is an interesting one. It is one that encompasses a number of other issues, not the least of which being the light rail option - the option of having light rail between Gungahlin and Civic Centre, something that I know that the Greens have been very interested in.


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