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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2014 Week 13 Hansard (Thursday, 27 November 2014) . . Page.. 4266 ..

I would also like to thank the work of the library as well. They do a superb job. Because we do not see them every day it can be easy to forget the very important contribution they make to this place.

On a sad note, I would like to note the passing of Phil Hughes today. It really was a tragic event and I feel sorry for his friends and family, but I also feel very sorry for the bowler, Sean Abbott, and the very traumatic thoughts that must be going through his head right now. It really was a freakish event, and I think anybody who has some understanding or some knowledge of cricket will know the role of the bouncer in cricket and how many millions have been bowled over the course of the last 150 years and just how freakish this week’s event was. I really do feel sorry, of course, for Phil Hughes’s family but also for Sean Abbott and his family as they go through this very trying period. I really hope that all cricket administrators and everybody involved in the game have real wisdom at this time in dealing with a very complex issue.

With that said, merry Christmas to everyone, and I look forward to seeing everyone, of course, next week but again in February.


DR BOURKE (Ginninderra) (6.42): 2014 has been an important year for Canberra, taking stock of and facing up to the challenges after the high of the centennial year and the low of the election of a federal government with an anti-Canberra bent. Canberrans’ appreciation of this city and the community we have built continues to increase even after the centennial celebrations. We can now proudly point to others recognising this unique city. The Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development’s original wellbeing report ranked Canberra No 1 above all other regions in the world’s most affluent countries. Canberra was judged Australia’s most livable city in the Property Council’s 2014 survey. Earlier in the year, the New York Times profiled Canberra as a “funky hipster city”, and the recent ABC drama The Code used Canberra as a beautiful backdrop to a gritty story of power and politics.

We face challenges such as the federal government’s attitude to the city. However, I am proud that we are facing up to those challenges, including addressing once and for all the loose-fill asbestos legacy. For many of the affected home owners, this will be a difficult Christmas, while some will feel liberated by now having got out from houses that threaten their health. This time last year we had recently launched the CBR logo. We spoke of Canberrans being confident, bold and ready. We have embraced that description and we are living it.

I have enjoyed the year, working for my constituents in Belconnen and west Gungahlin and meeting people at street stalls, events and in the normal course of being out and about in the electorate. Many have taken the time to write to me and meet with me about their issues or concerns. Their observations and insights keep us grounded and keep us working to make Canberra the best it can be for all of them. It is a privilege to play a part in improving the lives of the residents in my electorate of Ginninderra and Canberra generally.

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