Page 1625 - Week 06 - Tuesday, 30 April 1991

Next page . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . .

Tuesday, 30 April 1991


MR SPEAKER (Mr Prowse) took the chair at 2.30 pm and read the prayer.


Hospital Services Budget

MS FOLLETT: My question is to Mr Kaine, as Treasurer. Mr Kaine, what instructions did you give to Mr Humphries regarding implementation of the Treasury report, which he received in December 1989, on the budget overrun in the Hospital Services Division; and what action have you taken since then to follow up the implementation of that report's recommendations?

MR KAINE: I did not give Mr Humphries any specific directions on the implementation of that. It was his portfolio area; he is the responsible Minister. He had the report; he knew what was required, and I do not need to direct people in this Government, unlike what may have been the case under the Labor Government when Rosemary Follett had to tell everybody everything.

MS FOLLETT: I have a supplementary question. Mr Kaine, given that you are the Treasurer and it was a Treasury report, does not your failure to pursue the implementation of that Treasury report mean that you, along with Mr Humphries, must take responsibility for the health budget mess?

MR KAINE: No, it does not mean anything of the kind, Mr Speaker, and it is absurd to suggest so. What happened was that I asked the Treasury to examine the matter. The Treasury made a report which was of direct concern to the Minister for Health. I repeat: He is a responsible Minister; he does not need me to spell out in fine print what he must do to exercise the responsibilities of his portfolio. I am not the Minister for everything. I know that you would like me to be, because then we could spend question time with me answering all your questions, relevant or irrelevant; but that is not the case. I have an overriding responsibility for developing the budget and for the outcomes of that budget, but I do not have a total responsibility for managing every dollar during the course of the year. That responsibility is vested in the Ministers to whom this Assembly appropriates the money.

Next page . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . .