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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2018 Week 09 Hansard (Tuesday, 21 August 2018) . . Page.. 3299 ..

MR COE: Chief Minister, to what extent is your role as Chief Minister becoming untenable because of the powerful left faction and their influence in your cabinet and party?

MR BARR: To no extent. This government operates very effectively across all elements of its membership. That includes a minister from another political party, and we have demonstrated capacity to govern effectively and stably over an extended period of time. That does stand in marked contrast to the governing abilities of your own party even when you command a majority on the floor of the House of Representatives in your own right with your National Party colleagues.

ACTION bus service—consultation

MS CODY: My question is to the Minister for Transport and City Services. Minister, can you update the Assembly on planning for a new seven-day bus network for Canberra and the current phase of community consultation?

MS FITZHARRIS: I thank Ms Cody for the question and I am delighted to update the Assembly on the government’s work to deliver on our commitment for a city-wide integrated public transport network that can move people around our city efficiently and effectively, providing a real alternative to the car. We are delivering an integrated public transport system where buses will work alongside light rail to help residents and visitors travel across our city.

Canberra’s population is growing fast, and the ACT government is redesigning our bus network from the ground up to better serve our community. A proposed new bus network was out for public comment from 18 June to 12 August. Transport Canberra received more than 10,000 pieces of feedback, reflecting the very great lengths the ACT government has gone to in ensuring that the Canberra community has had an opportunity to provide feedback on the proposed new network. We have also met with commuters, parents, schools, students, community groups and peak bodies about these proposed changes. As I said last week, this extensive consultation is genuine.

Our task is now well underway to consider how the survey responses and various other correspondence will inform the completed design of the final bus network. I am committed to telling Canberrans what we have heard and what we are doing in response. I am also committed to making the case for an integrated public transport network. The final network will be released, along with detailed timetables and the final bus network, in late 2018, with the new network to start in early 2019 prior to the first school term.

While the Canberra Liberals will run their scare campaign against any changes to buses, I will listen and I will get on with the job of delivering what the people of Canberra voted for: more buses more often, seven days a week.

MS CODY: Minister, what are the main benefits, and what concerns have been raised through the consultation and how will the government work to address these concerns?

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