Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 11 Hansard (Thursday, 21 October 2010) . . Page.. 4867 ..
MR CORBELL: Mr Page, of course, represents electricity generators and retailers, if I recall correctly, and, of course, many of his members—indeed, most of his members—supply energy from fossil fuel powered sources. Now, it is okay, apparently, from the Liberal Party’s perspective that the cost of electricity generated from coal, for example, does not reflect the full cost of the use of that resource. Apparently the Liberal Party believe that it is all right to have the externalities of that resource passed on and not properly accounted for in the price of that resource.
Mr Smyth: On a point of order, Mr Speaker, standing order 118(a) speaks of answers being directly relevant. The question asked was: why has the government not adopted cheaper alternatives? It was not about what association Mr Page works for.
MR CORBELL: I am explaining, Mr Speaker—
MR SPEAKER: Sorry, are you speaking on the point of order?
MR CORBELL: No, I am not.
MR SPEAKER: There is no point of order at this time. I think the minister is, in the context of any debate about where electricity comes from—which is, I think, the tenor of your question, Mr Smyth—setting up the case. I am sure he will come—
Mr Smyth: He’s attacking the Liberal Party and he’s attacking Mr Page.
Mr Hanson: That’s what he’s doing. He’s attacking Mr Page.
MR SMYTH: Directly relevant—
MR SPEAKER: Don’t! Mrs Dunne.
Mrs Dunne: On a point of order, Mr Speaker, in accordance with standing order 118(b), the minister is not supposed to debate the issue. Mr Corbell was directly going in to debate the issue, to attack the person reported and to attack the Liberal Party rather than answer the question directly, as is required by standing order 118(a).
MR SPEAKER: Mrs Dunne, I have given my ruling on my views on where Mr Corbell is up to in the question. I think that pertains to your suggested point of order as well. Mr Corbell, I remind you of Mr Smyth’s question.
MR CORBELL: Yes, thank you, Mr Speaker. The reason that we do not agree with the view of the Energy Supply Association of Australia is that it would appear to be the case, from what the Liberal Party is asserting, that it is all right to not have regard to the facts—
Opposition members interjecting—
MR CORBELL: They do not like it, but the fact is that the cost of electricity generated—