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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 12 Hansard (Wednesday, 24 November 2021) . . Page.. 3571 ..

have the ability to park their car for free and catch the light rail—perfect for those who work in the city.

The continued efforts to improve our transport facilities are greatly appreciated by all Canberrans. I very much look forward to seeing these improvements to Yerrabi come to life, and the positive impact these will have on Yerrabi residents.

Proposed expenditure agreed to.

Justice and Community Safety Directorate—Part 1.7.

MR HANSON (Murrumbidgee) (10.47): I rise to speak about ACT Policing as a line item in the budget. Once again, though, this is an area where this government is failing to deliver—not only failing to deliver for the community but also failing to deliver for our dedicated police and their support staff.

It is particularly critical because of the last couple of years and the difficulties that have been faced by our police through the bushfires and COVID. Our police force are hardworking—those in uniform and the support staff—and they deserve better support.

Certainly, this has been the case since this government cut $15 million from the police budget back in 2013 when, I believe, Madam Speaker, you were the minister. Of course, Mr Gentleman, back then, voted for those cuts. He likes to deny that he voted for those cuts. Mr Rattenbury voted for those cuts; he was here then. Madam Speaker, you actually instigated those cuts. Mr Gentleman supported those cuts and voted for them, I imagine.

This government tries to deny that. I have quoted an ABC article. Let me go to the Canberra Times in April 2015. In an article headed “Fears local police positions will go as funding cuts begin to bite”, it states:

The ACT government has been urged to reinstate $15million—

Madam Speaker, $15.3 million, to be exact, as you would recall—

in savings to the territory’s police force, amid growing fears that positions will be cut in coming months.

The $15.36 million is being stripped from ACT Policing’s budget over four years from 2013-14.

The force is trying to focus the savings on supplier expenses to avoid a direct impact on the employee budget.

But Chief Police Officer Rudy Lammers conceded that some support positions may be “closely examined”, saying the tight fiscal environment was presenting a challenge in delivering high quality police services.

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