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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 4 Hansard (1 April) . . Page.. 1507..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

woodland of yellow box/red gum forests in the ACT. This was an increase by one third in one fell swoop of lowland woodland to the nature reserve system to ensure that it is protected in perpetuity.

In addition to that, we have committed $1.6 million to the protection and enhancement of those reserve areas. Through those measures, we have secured a future and long-term certainty about that significant part of our eco-system.

We are also mindful of the fact that Mr Wood, minister for the environment in I think 1994, was the last minister to commit a significant area of high quality yellow box/red gum to the reserve system when he established the Mulligan's Flat-perhaps the jewel in the crown of high quality lowland woodland in the ACT. It is relevant that we reflect on that. The last commitment of high quality lowland woodland to the reserve system was in 1994-nine years before our commitment of another 1000 hectares. Prior to the 1000 hectares committed by us last year, there was the 1000 hectares or so within the Mulligan reserve committed by Mr Wood, which represents our commitment to the long-term protection of lowland woodland in the ACT.

This is a rigorous, scientific strategy that will assist us to preserve and manage our remaining woodlands. It has been prepared by very eminent scientists in close consultation with a full range of conservation groups in the ACT. It has widespread support across the board from those concerned with conservation of our natural environment in the ACT. It is a part of our commitment to the natural environment in the ACT, of which I am particularly proud, and it will be an enduring legacy of this government.

Traffic flows

MS TUCKER: My question is to the Minister for Planning and is in regard to the traffic flow into and out of Gungahlin. Can the minister advise the Assembly of all the traffic monitoring the government has carried out from before the duplication of the Barton Highway was completed and since the completion of Horse Park Drive? Can the minister also advise the Assembly of the projected advantages to traffic flow on Northbourne Avenue of the removal of buses from the existing traffic lanes? I realise that the last part of the question will have to be taken on notice, but could we have that information by the end of the day?

MR WOOD: I do not know about that. I am the minister concerned, to start with. I will seek out what information is available and get back to you when that information is available.

Social plan

MS DUNDAS: My question is to the Minister for Community Affairs. The Canberra social plan states:

The Government has a strong commitment to work with the community sector and consumers to improve service delivery and to give the sector the certainty it needs to get on with what it does best-serving the needs of the ACT community.

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