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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 2 Hansard (9 March) . . Page.. 598..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

Economic Development and Business, Minister for Tourism, Minister for Sport and Recreation, Minister for Racing and Gaming, and Treasurer.

Ted Quinlan entered the Assembly after the 1998 election, bringing with him the skills and qualities that always come only from a rounded and rich life. An accountant by training and recognised as Australian Public Sector Accountant of the Year, he combined a successful career with a commitment to the community, giving his time and talents to respite care, the volunteer centre, Rotary, the Variety Club, and a host of sporting and social clubs. It was at this time, during his association with the Weston Creek Bowling Club, that the word "treasurer"would first be used in connection with his name.

The legacy of that community involvement is the man Ted is today, a man of deep and enduring community networks, a man with many friends in many walks of life. Of course, those early associations, in particular the sporting associations, must carry some of the blame for the fact that this is Ted's last sitting day. All that football, all that running around, have exacted their delayed revenge on Ted's knees. That, perhaps, prompted him to think about the life that awaits him after politics a little sooner than he might otherwise have done; indeed, rather sooner than we wish he had.

Mr Speaker, as Labor leader in the Assembly, I have been privileged to work with Ted Quinlan since 1998. I and my Labor colleagues have benefited from his wise counsel, his strong sense of social justice and his capabilities as a parliamentarian. For most of that time, I have been privileged to watch him hone his already considerable skills as a cartoonist-an incisive watcher of people, capable of rendering human absurdity with great accuracy. I might say that I am glad that I sit at his shoulder and have sat at his shoulder for all of those years in the chamber, rather than opposite him and another potential subject for his scrutiny. I am not aware whether Ted has kept the many hundreds of portraits that he had drawn of members over the last eight years.

The ACT's economy is a stronger, more mature, more confident and more enthusiastic one for Ted Quinlan's considerable contribution to the governance of the ACT. The most recent business expectation figures from the chamber of commerce were so good that the chief executive asked for them to be double-checked. He should have just walked out of his office and looked around. The city is bursting with enthusiasm, keen to get on with the business of building a better life for every person who makes their home here. Our unemployment is at a near record low and a staggering number of businesses are planning to put on more staff in the coming quarter.

A good part of the credit for that historically unparalleled good mood must go to Ted Quinlan. He has overseen the successful brokering of the $600 million City West redevelopment which will fundamentally and permanently alter the relationship of this country's premier university and the commercial part of Canberra. He helped seduce NICTA to the nation's capital, positioning us to claim a larger share of the information economy. Trade missions he has led have brought tens of millions of dollars in export earnings to the ACT this year alone. The capital works now under way or in the pipeline-government ones like the GDE, the prison and the west Belconnen school-as well as the billions of dollars worth of private sector development in Civic and other town centres, are bringing construction jobs in the short term and permanent jobs in the long term.

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