Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2011 Week 05 Hansard (Wednesday, 4 May 2011) . . Page.. 1784 ..
that the Treasurer delivered yesterday you would be aware that the government proposes to fund ACTION services into four suburbs—I think most particularly Casey, Crace and Bonner; I am not sure of the fourth—to deal with precisely this issue.
As the population grows, as demand develops, the government seeks to respond, but it is, as always, a question of available resources and decisions we take to prioritise the way in which those resources are applied.
MR SPEAKER: A supplementary, Ms Hunter?
MS HUNTER: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Minister, will the new suburbs in Molonglo have access to public transport services from the time they are ready to be occupied, and if not should they continue to be marketed as sustainable “envirodevelopments”?
MR STANHOPE: It would not be the government’s intention to provide a bus service into Molonglo on the day that the first house is occupied, Ms Hunter, if that is the import of your question, which I believe it to be. I do not believe it is reasonable, where resources are always limited, are always stretched, where they must be applied in a way as equitably as we can and where the pie is defined, for us to remove the services from, say, existing work in order to provide a service into the first Molonglo suburb the minute the first house is occupied. I do not believe it would be fair or reasonable. It would not be our intention to run a bus service through Molonglo the minute the first house is occupied. I do not believe that is reasonable and I believe even the residents of Molonglo would understand why the government would be constrained in funding a route in those circumstances. But in the context of a debate around sustainability, yes, it is our intention, of course within parameters, depending on your definition, for those suburbs to be sustainable. How long is a piece of string?
MS BRESNAN: A supplementary.
MR SPEAKER: Yes, Ms Bresnan.
MS BRESNAN: Thank you, Mr Speaker. Has the government done any modelling of the cost savings generated by providing public transport and public transport infrastructure to new suburbs from the outset, both for the government and for householders?
MR STANHOPE: I am not aware of the exact detail of the work that would have been done in relation to cost and benefits, but I am more than happy to take the question on notice.
MR COE: A supplementary, Mr Speaker.
MR SPEAKER: Yes, Mr Coe.
MR COE: Chief Minister, what suburbs are likely to get those buses first—the suburb of Casey, which is still waiting, or suburbs in Molonglo?