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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2006 Week 9 Hansard (20 September) . . Page.. 2996..


MR STEFANIAK (continuing):

basically on their own bat after the Cosmos got the heave-ho from the national league competition.

The Belconnen Soccer Club got behind the Blue Devils, which attracted players throughout Canberra—it was not just players who played with Belconnen United. For five years they participated in the New South Wales competitions. In their first year they did not make the semi finals. Every other year they made the semi finals. They were premiers one year. They won the home and away and the club championship, but narrowly lost a grand final that year. What a magnificent effort from, basically, a group of people in Belconnen supporting what was effectively the Canberra team that did so well in a major competition.

The arts are not neglected in Belconnen, although, unlike Tuggeranong and other areas of Canberra, apart from the Hawker college theatre, which is quite a good one and was renovated in 1996 or so—and the one I mentioned at the Belconnen Community Centre—we are yet to see a Belconnen arts centre. I think that is still in the budget. I know a fair bit of work has been done on that. That is an essential project that needs to go ahead, because Belconnen is a region of close on 90,000 people. Every other area in Canberra, including Tuggeranong, has an arts centre. Tuggeranong, of course, has Erindale plus the dedicated arts centre on Lake Tuggeranong. That is one link in the chain that is missing for Belconnen. I have already mentioned the sporting facilities. I think they are adequate, although more work needs to be done, especially to ensure that maintenance is available.

I would like to see the arts speeded up if at all possible. I have certainly gone to a lot of plays around the area. In fact, a lot of residents I know have taken up acting for the first time, including Terry O'Brien, of all people. He was a mate of mine from the army. He did a wonderful expose of the judge in Oklahoma, I think it was. It is amazing to see the local talent available in the arts. I commend the government for at least starting the project, but impress on them the need to ensure that it finishes. It will be a magnificent addition to Belconnen.

I turn finally to the lake itself, which is a great, untapped resource. I was pleased to have something to do with creating a boatshed. I was involved in rowing and other activities on Lake Ginninderra. I think I launched that together rather badly. I recall a two-man boat, which I have forgotten the name for. It is a very beautiful area. It is a great resource for joggers and for family picnics. There are a lot of lovely parts to Belconnen. It is one of the great untapped secrets of Canberra. It has done a lot in the last 40 years. Happy birthday, Belconnen.

At 6.00 pm, in accordance with standing order 34, the debate was interrupted and the resumption of the debate made an order of the day for the next sitting. The motion for the adjournment of the Assembly was put.

Adjournment

Legislative Assembly members—pairs

MS MacDONALD (Brindabella) (6.00): Mr Speaker, earlier today, under standing order 46, Mrs Dunne made a personal explanation in relation to the issue of pairs being granted or not being granted. There is a bit of a question mark about that. Mrs Dunne


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