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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 08 Hansard (Wednesday, 18 August 2010) . . Page.. 3535 ..


MR HARGREAVES: Madam Assistant Speaker, to assist your good self and to assist Mr Smyth, I will, in fact, refer to the cost of living pressures.

MADAM ASSISTANT SPEAKER: I think we can restart.

MR HARGREAVES: The cost of living pressures in this town will suffer very badly if the Liberal Party get anywhere near power. The cost of living pressures in this town will accelerate if Brer Rabbit happens to be in the Lodge. In fact, he is not going to live there; he is going to live somewhere else. In fact, the problem with these people here is that their cost of living pressures are being resisted by the Greens. Lin Hatfield Dodds has exposed them and they do not like it. So what do they do? They come into this chamber and use parliamentary privilege to put a whole stack of spin out there that nobody is really going to believe.

This whole motion is a fraud. This is all about them being frightened to death. This is all about the fight between Gary Humphries and Lin Hatfield Dodds, because Gary Humphries has never had a decent fight in his life, and now he has got one. Madam Assistant Speaker, I do not need to speak anymore.

MS BURCH (Brindabella) (4.00): I am just responding to one of Mrs Dunne’s earlier comments on the Labor Party policy on childcare. From what I heard upstairs, Mrs Dunne stood up in this Assembly and said, in relation to the figures and reports from last week about the New South Wales report, that they were not exactly comparable. That is indeed right, but the rest is terribly wrong. She went on to say that it will probably cost more in the ACT. I just want you to get that there is a significant difference, Mrs Dunne, between the current ACT and New South Wales childcare regulations. In New South Wales, current childcare regulations are not the same as in the ACT. I will say it again and again to you.

Except for the under-twos, the ACT has had the same child to worker ratios as the new quality standard since 1996. That is, all our childcare centres except for the under-twos currently meet the existing standards. New South Wales is only just adjusting to these increased ratios. Its ratio for two to three-year-old children is one to eight. So there is a fundamental difference that will impact on the cost modelling. As for the under-twos in the ACT, 25 per cent of our current childcare centres already meet these ratios, and they are confident that they will meet the new standards by 2012.

The reports on the childcare survey commissioned by Child Care New South Wales on childcare costs are misleading. We expect that the quality agenda will increase the average out of home cost of a family on $80,000 by around 57c to one dollar and something per week in 2010-11 for a child who attends full-time childcare for 50 hours a week. I could not find the report, and I must admit that I was a bit rushed to get down here, but from memory the Access Economics report indicates a cost of between $1.20 and $1.30 per day in 2012.

The Labor government has increased the childcare rebate and has brought down childcare costs by 20 per cent. We have increased the childcare rebate from 30 to


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