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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 08 Hansard (Thursday, 16 August 2018) . . Page.. 3126 ..

Whether it is growing our local innovation and knowledge economy sectors, boosting our creative industries or strengthening Canberra’s reputation as a must-visit destination for tourists seeking new food, cultural and natural experiences, our government is hard at work investing in this city’s economic development. Through the 2018 budget we are backing local industries to create more good jobs, because we understand that a strong and inclusive economy is at the heart of a successful and thriving city.

I commend the Chief Minister, Treasury and Economic Development appropriation to the Assembly.

Proposed expenditure agreed to.

Justice and Community Safety Directorate—Part 1.6

MR HANSON (Murrumbidgee) (5.30): I start by acknowledging some of the work in the budget that the opposition supports, for example, underway is a victims of crime charter of rights. I would like to recognise the achievements of the previous Victims of Crime Commissioner, John Hinchey, for the work he did progressing that. I am very glad that the government has taken that on. I know that that will be continued by the current commissioner, whom I have met with. There is also support for areas like Legal Aid and community legal groups. I would like to acknowledge as well the by and large cooperative relationship that has developed between my office and that of the Attorney-General and our staff, David Ferguson and Ian Hagan. Our principal staff are right into this, and I think that is good; I hope that continues. That does not mean we will not have the occasional dust-up, I am sure, Attorney-General.

Mr Barr: It wouldn’t be you, Jeremy, if there were not.

MR HANSON: It would not. So, on cue, let me segue to the areas where the budget is unfortunately not fulfilling the promise it should. For example, that of a new magistrate who has been appointed. I certainly add my welcome to Ms Louise Taylor, the eighth permanent magistrate, to our Magistrates Court. I wish her well as she serves our community.

The appointment of an eighth magistrate has been described as not enough by the Chief Magistrate. As the Canberra Times reported, and I will quote:

The ACT's Chief Magistrate said on Tuesday that the addition of an eighth full time magistrate to the court will not be enough to improve timely access to justice.

Chief Magistrate Lorraine Walker said the modelling that had been done suggested the court needed more than eight and at least nine magistrates if it wanted a “slight increase” in efficiency.

So I make that point and I urge the government to address that issue.

Another area that I raise concern about is that of domestic violence. This area has enjoyed tripartisan support in this place, but on 22 June this year ABC news reported the following:

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