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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 04 Hansard (Friday, 23 April 2021) . . Page.. 1143 ..


Members of the Gungahlin community frequently use Yerrabi Pond for fishing, canoeing and kayaking. All these activities bring the possibility of incidental contact with the water. To facilitate the existing community enjoyment of this fantastic body of water, and also to allow further development of this recreational use of Yerrabi Pond, I am seeking to amend the motion to call for the government to consider rating Yerrabi Pond for secondary contact recreation. If implemented, this will help keep our community safe through water testing for bacteria and blue-green algae. It will also give more members of our community more confidence to enjoy this community asset.

This also aligns with the purpose outlined in the original designs for Yerrabi Pond dating from 1991. These designs show that Yerrabi Pond was intended for the recreational activity I have outlined. It is time that we realise this intended vision for Yerrabi Pond; recognise that the community are already using the pond for recreational purposes such as those I have described; and do this whilst keeping our community safe, encouraging more to use this beautiful lake.

There will be much work to do to improve the water quality to support this type of recreation, but I believe that this should remain the aspiration. I commend the amendment to the Assembly.

MR MILLIGAN (Yerrabi) (10.28): I thank Mr Pettersson for bringing this motion to the Assembly. However, I cannot understand how this member of this longstanding Labor-Greens government can stand here in this place and sponsor this petition. Seriously? You are having to call on your own government to invest in community facilities that have been neglected for over 20 years, and ask for public services and amenities like tables, bins, toilets and signs? This should be business as usual for this government, but that does not seem to be the case here.

Members of the community like Darron, John and Kay, who are here today, who have formed the Friends of Yerrabi Pond group, should be commended for their service. I have seen these passionate volunteers out in our community every weekend, talking to people, getting signatures, recruiting more members. They have done an outstanding job. Clearly, they have brought significant pressure to bear so that the Labor-Greens MLAs are standing here today talking about their commitment and making promises. It will be my job, and the job of Leanne Castley and the Canberra Liberals, to continue this good work, to keep the pressure up and to make sure that this government delivers more funding in the next budget.

Don’t get me wrong. We have asked for this before. We even promised this investment as part of our election commitments in October last year. The Canberra Liberals know and understand the needs of our local community in Gungahlin. We live there and we listen; we use the facilities; and we understand that basic improvements need to be made. Additionally, we think that this site has so much potential. We will watch with interest to see what will come out of this motion.

As this motion states, Yerrabi Pond is an important community recreation area for the growing Gungahlin community. But it is so much more than that. It is a meeting place, a place of celebration, where we hold birthday parties and barbecues. It is a


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