Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 11 Hansard (Tuesday, 19 October 2010) . . Page.. 4665 ..
Debate (on motion by Mr Smyth) adjourned to the next sitting.
Motion by Mr Corbell proposed:
That the Assembly do now adjourn.
MR HARGREAVES (Brindabella) (5.54): I want to follow up on some of the things that I spoke about in the MPI. Mr Smyth was a bit critical of what I had been saying. I talked about all the things we had done but I did not talk about outcomes. I actually do want to talk about some of the outcomes, some of the things that we did.
We actually preserved quite a number of jobs in the building industry. We preserved a number of apprenticeships and traineeships. What we did not do was introduce policy that cost us so many jobs in Tuggeranong. In fact, I can remember in 1996 it cost 7,000 jobs in Tuggeranong. I might ask rhetorically, of course, Mr Speaker: who was the federal member for Canberra in February 1996?
It is a trivial pursuit question but it is not a trivial question. The answer is Mr Smyth. Who was the member for Canberra at the end of March 1996? It was Annette Ellis. Why do you think that was? It was because Mr Smyth was an apologist for the economic and workplace relations policies of John Howard. We suffered 7,000 jobs lost in our electorate because of the policies of John Howard. Mr Smyth was a member of that government in those days. Of course, the people in Tuggeranong said, “No, we want the jobs for our kids preserved, not sacked like that.”
I can remember, in fact, campaigning and looking at all of those “to let” signs around the windows—all the businesses that went bust in Tuggeranong because of it. These are the small businesses. I hear Mr Smyth saying, “What are you doing for small business?” The answer is that we are trying to support small business.
I ask now in return what he was doing. He was the small business adviser for that prince of balaclavas, Peter Reith. That is who he was the small business adviser for. And what happened? Swathes of businesses went down the guts—down the toilet. They were absolutely slashed in Tuggeranong. What happened? He got tossed out.
I think there is a little bit of hypocrisy at play here. I really think that is a little disappointing. I think we need, as we have been told so often in the past from Mr Smyth, to go back and have a look at a bit of history. He was also a minister in the Carnell government, as a matter of fact. We saw their great business support initiatives—an overnight loan, which was a real beauty. I can remember, in fact, the “feel the power of Canberra” campaign. Where was that? It was smack on the side of a big aeroplane that did not get off the ground.
It was not the only thing that did not get off the ground, Mr Speaker. The Liberal Party’s re-election did not get off the ground because they lost it in 1998. Then we