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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2007 Week 12 Hansard (Wednesday, 21 November 2007) . . Page.. 3667 ..

apart from the hospital board proposal, any ideas about how it would manage some of the pressures that are being experienced in the public health system.

We are told, “It’s looking like the Royal North Shore.” I have no idea where that quote comes from. Again, it is a matter of wandering in, saying it and believing your mantra. I stand here and say that our hospital delivers and that our management in the hospital is excellent. There are times when our hospital does not respond appropriately or does not respond in the best way. I have never, ever stood here and said that our hospital system is perfect. No-one can say that. But we do have a first-rate health system that is being constantly bagged by those opposite. And they bag people who are not in a position to respond, which, as I said, is a cowardly approach to the management of these issues.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: The question is that the motion be agreed to. Those of that opinion say “aye”—

Opposition members: Aye!

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: To the contrary, “no”.

Ms MacDonald: Mr Deputy Speaker, I am sorry; I did not realise that nobody else was going to speak on this.

Mrs Burke: The call has been given. You are too late.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: I am sorry, Ms MacDonald; we have called it.

Ms MacDonald: I wanted to close the debate. I did not realise that nobody else from the other side was going to stand. I thought Mr Mulcahy was going to stand to speak. I would like to close the debate, Mr Deputy Speaker.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: Ms MacDonald, just a moment. I stick to the decision I made. There was ample time given for you to stand and engage in the debate.

Standing orders—suspension

MS MacDONALD (Brindabella) (5.12): I move:

That so much of the standing orders be suspended as would prevent Ms MacDonald from closing the debate after the question was put by the Chair.

MR MULCAHY (Molonglo) (5.13): Mr Deputy Speaker, I think the motion is out of order. I do not believe that it is appropriate to be suspending standing orders when a vote has been taken and ruled upon. I would suggest that the proposal to suspend standing orders in order to complete the debate is out of order. You had already ruled that the debate had concluded and had ruled on a vote. I seek your ruling on the fact that the proposal to suspend standing orders to conclude the debate is in fact out of order.

MR DEPUTY SPEAKER: My advice is that it is quite in order.

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