Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 17 March 2010) . . Page.. 1062 ..
The problem with that is that the industry is now disenfranchised. We will get the autopsy—and that is what it will be—on the last sitting day in October 2010. I am sure that the industry will be very grateful to the Greens for that document. It will be testament—absolute testament—to how effective they have been as third-party insurance and probably the fraud that they have committed on the people of Canberra in that claim. It says:
… by the last sitting day of October 2010 …
details of work performed by the Government to identify the impact the revised funding model will have on jobs supported directly and indirectly by the racing industry …
Why would you want that in October 2010 when the damage is done? It is beginning to sound more and more like an autopsy report. “Yes, on 1 July 2010 we killed the industry and now we are going to report the damage to you.” And part (c) says:
… details of any change to the funding of programs to tackle problem gambling that has occurred following implementation of the revised funding model.
Surely you would want details of what the impact of the revised funding model on problem gambling might be before it went into place. Wouldn’t you want to know that the government had done the work before they did the damage? Clearly the Greens do not want to know that. The amendment is about being seen to be doing something without actually achieving anything at all. That is the problem with many of the amendments that the Greens move when they support this government.
MR BARR (Molonglo—Minister for Education and Training, Minister for Planning, Minister for Tourism, Sport and Recreation and Minister for Gaming and Racing) (6.14): I will just speak briefly on this matter. The government will support this amendment and I will just take the opportunity to respond to a couple of the comments made by Mr Smyth.
Mr Smyth is indeed correct: he has pinged me on one element in his speech and that is that, yes, in my time as minister I have presided over cuts to certain areas of certain portfolios; I accept that. It is all about good government. It is about seeking efficiencies. It is about directing resources to their highest possible use. I wear it as a badge of pride that in my time in this place I have been able to redirect government resources to higher priority causes. And I will wear that as a badge of pride because I believe that a responsible government and a responsible minister look to find efficiencies, look to different ways of delivering services and look to prioritise the limited government funds to areas of the highest need.
So, on that charge from the shadow treasurer, the person who purports to look after the territory’s finances in a Liberal government, what is he saying—that you should never make a cut in any area or you should never reallocate expenditure to higher order priorities? That is exactly the issue that the Liberal Party face on this issue and on so many: they seek to walk both sides of the street. They seek to argue that they are the party of fiscal responsibility, that they are the party of economic management. Yet