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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2017 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 13 December 2016) . . Page.. 23 ..


Leave of absence

Motion (by Mr Coe) agreed to:

That leave of absence be granted to Mrs Dunne, Ms Lawder and Mr Wall for this sitting week to attend the CPA annual conference.

Administration and Procedure—Standing Committee

Membership

Motion (by Mr Coe) agreed to:

That, notwithstanding the provisions of standing order 16, Mr Wall be discharged from the Standing Committee on Administration and Procedure for today and that Mr Coe be appointed in his place.

Inaugural speeches

MADAM SPEAKER: Before I call Mr Parton, I remind members that it is traditional that inaugural speeches be heard in silence.

MR PARTON (Brindabella) (10.05), by leave: My name is Mark Parton, and I am so proud and I am humbled to be here. Today is the culmination of a dream that I had as a 12-year-old boy. My initials are “MP”. So from a very young age my brother Dean and I used to joke that they were the perfect initials for an elected representative, and I dreamt that one day I could be elected to represent the people. I have to pinch myself today to believe that it is real, but it looks as though it is.

I have been 50 years on this earth. I was born in 1966, the second son of a struggling country grocer by the name of Tom Parton and his wife Jacqui, who I think are watching online. My parents were living in a small country town in Western Australia called York. York is 100 kilometres this side of Perth. It is very similar to Braidwood: three pubs, supermarket, corner store, hospital, primary school, high school up to year 10, and lots and lots of farmers with flannelette shirts ripped at the sleeves.

It was wheat and sheep primarily when I was growing up there. There has been some diversification since then. My parents moved to York from Narrogin, which is another country town, as my father chased his dream to build a career in retail. My father came from a very poor family. His father had been a railway worker. He was one of seven children. They did it tough. My father’s brother, my Uncle George, still lives in the house that they all grew up in. It is a small and very modest house in Narrogin and I am astounded that they all fitted in. I am blowed if I know where they all slept.

My father was not a scholar. He had some major health issues at 13 which robbed him of a full year of schooling. He left school at 15 to work in retail. Some years later, the particular business he was working for opened up a store in York, which was 100 kilometres north, and sent my father, who at that stage was in his 20s, to run it. It did not work. It closed soon after and my father decided to have a go himself. He went to various banks to borrow money so he could start his own business.


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