Page 3997 - Week 14 - Tuesday, 22 October 1991

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MR SPEAKER: Order! You are debating the point.

MR CONNOLLY: Mr Speaker, the supposed supplementary question accused me of shirking my duties, so I will expect some indulgence in responding to that point. He obviously wanted to hear more.

Mr Speaker, I have written to Senator Tate and have sent a copy of the weapons legislation, proposing it as a model form. Moreover, the Chief Minister has written to the Prime Minister on this issue. The ACT weapons legislation has been circulated widely throughout the Commonwealth. The view of the ACT, which will be put effectively by a very senior police officer and the secretary to my department, will be that that ought to be a uniform model. As I said, the ACT is the only jurisdiction which fully complies.

The prime responsibility of a Minister is to be present in the house for question time, and members of this Assembly, wherever possible, seek to be here. Mr Collaery seems to think he is on some sort of a winner here because he is urging us to travel more. He is embarrassed about that extraordinary record that they achieved last year when this former Minister was in every trip that was going.

This Government is prudent and responsible about its travel budget. I fly economy whenever possible. I was faced with three ministerial meetings in Melbourne this week.

Mr Duby: And you have shirked them all.

MR CONNOLLY: One says, "You have shirked them all", assuming that I should be there all the time. The other one is saying, "You are going to one and not the other". They cannot even get their story straight amongst themselves. I will be attending the Standing Committee of Attorneys-General, which will not be meeting while this house is sitting. When this house is sitting, I will be present in it to take questions from the Opposition. But I earnestly hope that they have rather better questions to ask tomorrow.

Children's Day Care Services Section - Staffing

MS MAHER: My question is also to the Minister for Housing and Community Services, Mr Connolly. Have you had a chance to review the evidence that you gave in the Estimates Committee in relation to the staffing levels of the licensing functions area of the children's services section? If so, do you now agree that you gave an assurance to the committee that there would be no staffing reductions in that area?

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