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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 4 Hansard (2 April) . . Page.. 1243..


MR WOOD (continuing):

The police action against drugs continues. It is, I believe, effective in its operation. The use of drugs varies from time to time. I will send you a breakdown of drug usage, which I am sure you would find interesting. It shows how the use of various drugs-heroin, cannabis, amphetamines and the like-changes from time to time.

With the reduction in heroin supply, the task of police was somewhat eased, although they also play a significant part in reducing the supply of heroin in their policing, both here and elsewhere in Australia. The police are constantly alert to and aware of the problem of drugs. It is a major effort to contain the use of drugs. They know that, by doing that, they will contain the level of theft in society. Every measure is taken in order to do that. Of course, what the police do is one measure, and many other measures are taken in this society that are of importance in trying to alleviate the impact of drugs.

MRS CROSS: I thank the minister for his answer. Minister, are you aware of other research or studies that show a link between illicit drug use and crime, and can you indicate what role such research is playing in strategies to combat crime in the ACT?

MR WOOD: Mr Speaker, I cannot initially specify other studies. I am sure there are many there. You can read in the popular press of a variety of studies of this nature. In terms of the Institute of Criminology, I read everything that comes from there. I have over many years. I am sure I have seen relevant studies from there, but I cannot specify one at this time.

Mrs Cross: You can take it on notice.

MR WOOD: I will certainly take that on notice, but I do not contest the notion that the use of drugs is a very significant part of the crime scene. I think that does not need much demonstration.

Economic white paper

MR STEFANIAK: I direct my question to the Treasurer. It is about expenditure on the government's economic development white paper. Treasurer, budget paper 3 makes it clear that $250,000 has been allocated in 2002-03 and that the funding for that amount was provided in the second Appropriation Act 2001-02. It is here on page 163 of BP3. The explanatory note reads: "Funding provided through the 2nd Appropriation Act 2001-02."

I should also point out to the Treasurer that he was wrong in his answer on this matter in the Assembly yesterday when he referred to that section of the budget as "Initiatives explained". There is, of course, no such thing; it does not exist. He might like to read the papers through himself to avoid such errors.

Treasurer, you said yesterday that $500,000 has been allocated to the white paper. Since budget paper No 3 shows that only $250,000 has been allocated in 2002-03 and that this amount was rolled over from 2001-02, is budget paper 3 wrong?

MR QUINLAN: The answer to that is: it is how you read it. But if you look at page 35 of budget paper 4, you will find that the changes to appropriations show that there is $500,000. This is factual: $250,000 was provided in the second appropriation bill, before


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