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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 03 Hansard (Wednesday, 17 March 2010) . . Page.. 977 ..

There are a number of organisations in Canberra that are doing a great job with regard to domestic animals—making sure that domestic animals are not abused but also supporting owners as they keep domestic animals. I would like to mention a few of those organisations today and pay tribute for the great work that they do.

RSPCA ACT are one such organisation, which I have spoken about in this place before. I spoke about them just a couple of weeks ago—in fact, on 25 February. I commended Michael Linke for the great work that he is doing. The RSPCA have got a pretty unique business model in that they carry out a number of services off their own bat but they also carry out a number of services on behalf of the government. It does make their business model particularly unique, and it makes funding quite unique as well. They are, of course, underfunded; they always need more money. They look to the private sector and to their own resources to think of interesting and novel ways to make money.

One such way was the RSPCA quiz night held a couple of weeks ago. I know that a number of members of the Greens were at that quiz night. And there were me, Steve Doszpot and Brendan Smyth as part of the Liberal contingent. We had a really great night.

Mr Seselja: That was the winning team, was it not?

MR COE: We were the winning team. The theme of the quiz night was robots. Not being a robot connoisseur myself, I did find it a little bit tricky to add considerable knowledge to our team’s knowledge base, but we did have quite a brains trust that we could all turn to. We did win and it was a great night. Gary Humphries did a superb job as MC, the quiz master, and his family helped with some of the administration.

One of the challenges that the RSPCA have is with regard to their location, with regard to their site. Their site is ageing; their facility is really overstretched. Anyone who has been out there knows that it is desperately in need of an upgrade. That is a very expensive operation, but it falls upon us as a parliament to think about how we can better deliver services for domestic animals and wild animals here in the ACT, because in the future that site will not be one that we will necessarily want for the care and protection of animals. We have to work with Michael Linke and the board to make sure that we are delivering animal services in the best way possible and giving the RSPCA all the support that they require.

In acknowledging Michael Linke, I would also like to acknowledge Sue Gage, who is the President of RSPCA ACT. She has got a fantastic team on the board that she leads. As I think I mentioned the other day, those board members include Heidi Pritchard, Paula Shinerock, Kasy Chambers, Michael Cooper, Maureen Hickman, Jill Mail and Lee-Anne Shepherd. In addition to that, Tony Miller served until December 2008 as treasurer.

A couple of weeks ago, I also mentioned a number of sponsors that support the RSPCA. We should be supporting the businesses that support our community, so I encourage people to support them.

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