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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 7 Hansard (15 August) . . Page.. 2181..

Estimates 2006-2007-Select Committee


MS PORTER (Ginninderra) (5.06): Pursuant to order, I present the following report:

Estimates 2006-2007-Select Committee-Report-Appropriation Bill 2006-2007, dated 14 August 2006, including additional comments (Dr Foskey, Mr Gentleman) and a dissenting report (Mr Pratt, Mr Smyth), together with a copy of the relevant minutes of proceedings and supplementary papers.

I seek leave to move a motion authorising the report for publication.

Leave granted.

MS PORTER: I move:

That the report be authorised for publication.

Question resolved in the affirmative.

MS PORTER: I move:

That the report be noted.

I table the report of the Select Committee on Estimates for the Appropriation Bill 2006-2007. This year the select committee met for a record number of 14 days and undertook nearly 24 hours of deliberative meetings. A record number of 435 questions on notice were requested by both committee members and non-committee members, which of course is both an indication of the amount of interest that members had in the detail of the budget papers and also the amount of scrutiny that they undertook. It is also a reflection of the nature of the ACT budget for 2006-07.

This year the budget was delayed to allow recommendations from a whole-of-government review, the strategic and functional review of the ACT public sector and services. The budget papers were presented to the Assembly on 6 June 2006. As forecast, they outlined significant changes to the structure and administrative arrangements for the ACT government and its agencies, as well as additional revenue-raising initiatives, efficiencies and changes to the ACT accounting system.

When tabling the appropriation bill, the Chief Minister told the Assembly that he believed the government was behaving in a responsible manner by constraining spending and introducing these structural changes. Members will recall that the government also embarked upon a program of introducing triple bottom line reporting in the 2005-06 budget. Establishing an effective evaluation framework is a complex and ongoing project which the committee is keen to see continue and bear fruit in coming years. The government members of the committee find that this is indeed a strong and visionary budget that gives the ACT the first opportunity it has been afforded to work towards achieving a sustainable future. What other government in the ACT has before taken these steps?

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