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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 06 Hansard (Wednesday, 23 June 2010) . . Page.. 2247 ..

that you signed the answer, Ms Burch, and you read the answer. You do read answers before you send them back to the Assembly, I take it? Maybe you do not. Maybe you do not understand your portfolio and Mr Hanson is right. You are just warming the seat until somebody better than Mr Hargreaves or perhaps you, Madam Deputy Speaker, can be found to fill that slot.

But clearly the minister is not across her brief. We have a clear answer that says the money was reallocated. If the money has been reallocated, why do you not just put it back? Amend your budget. We know from most of the ministers the internal budgets have not been allocated. Let us see this money replaced. Let us see a little bit of sanity. How about an outbreak of sanity and common sense here, in the Assembly, in the government, where clearly the majority of members are in favour of some action being taken to support the Shepherd Centre and Noah’s Ark? How about we just have an announcement from the ministers that they will fix this problem? (Time expired.)

MR DOSZPOT (Brindabella) (12.00), in reply: The minister’s response to my motion is incredible. He talks about opposition for opposition’s sake. I say: “No, minister. It is not opposition for opposition’s sake. It is the opposition doing the work of the opposition, which is to keep you accountable, to scrutinise the government and its decisions. It is to keep the government accountable.” That is what we are doing, Mr Barr. We are working on behalf of the people whom you refuse to listen to. We are working on behalf of the community—a community that you, minister, seem to have abandoned.

The minister’s response to my motion is incredible in many other ways. He is totally out of touch with the community. He is developing incredible form with a growing reputation for not meeting with the community or fulfilling his portfolio responsibilities. During the estimates process we had group after group telling us the same: “We cannot meet with this minister.” It seems that if there are no cameras or journalists around then there is no Andrew Barr to be found. Minister, it is time to wake up to your responsibilities. You are not the minister for media. You have a responsibility to the community as well.

Mr Barr: You are very sensitive about that, aren’t you, Steve?

MR DOSZPOT: You are the one that is sensitive. Mr Barr keeps referring to—

Mr Barr: You have remarkable sensitivity about that. Employ a decent media adviser and you might get in the media. Have something interesting to say, Steve, and you might get in the media.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Thank you, Mr Barr. We will not have commentary on people’s staff in the chamber.

MR DOSZPOT: That is one of the most illuminating things that you have said in this Assembly, minister. I am not looking for a good media adviser to get my picture in the papers. I am here to represent—

MR SPEAKER: Mr Doszpot, do not continue the topic. Let us just go back to the speech, thank you.

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