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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 03 Hansard (Thursday, 18 March 2010) . . Page.. 1119 ..


returned—14 of those. There were government agency briefings. There were 10 website responses to ACT Health. There were 338 hits to the ACT Health webpage on it. There were 126 hits to the questionnaire on the adult secure unit. There were 1,500 newsletters delivered in Narrabundah, 2½ thousand around the Canberra Hospital and 2,300 in Gungahlin.

The decision to have Quamby as the preferred site was taken in the last two weeks, after looking at the feedback we received and the report on the pros and cons of each of the sites.

MR SPEAKER: Mr Coe, a supplementary question?

MR COE: Minister, what was the projected cost of the original facility, and what is the projected cost of the new facility?

MS GALLAGHER: Well, you can read in your budget papers that the original cost for the secure adult mental health inpatient unit was in the order of $11.5 million. Choosing Quamby as the preferred site increases the costs by the order of $3 million to demolish the current Quamby site and to prepare the land for building. That was one of the cons of the Quamby site—the additional costs. Those costs would not be incurred on the Mitchell or Gungahlin sites.

Now that we have chosen the preferred site, we will go through the detailed design stage of that building, and there may be some increased costs as well, because it is not co-located with the adult inpatient unit, which it was originally proposed to do when it was originally budgeted. I think I have said that a number of times publicly before. But the detail of the additional cost has not been agreed to and will be worked through in the next little while as the design of the building is finalised.

MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Bresnan, a supplementary?

MS BRESNAN: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Minister, what is the proposed time frame for the construction of the facility?

MS GALLAGHER: It is a little difficult, I guess, to give a concrete answer on this because I am not certain how the process is going to go from here. I have actually been quite heartened by the lack of concern about this facility that has been expressed so far. But I expect that there will be some more community consultation that occurs—

Mr Smyth: So how late is it now—five years?

MS GALLAGHER: Oh, Mr Smyth, I think you have had about 25 questions already. There is a process here that members get to their feet and ask questions.

Mr Seselja: Very sensitive.

Mr Smyth: Yes.

Mr Seselja: You are sounding sensitive.


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