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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2021 Week 13 Hansard (Wednesday, 1 December 2021) . . Page.. 4010 ..


everyday life will be a significantly easier task. This is a matter I look forward to, and put everyone on notice on, discussing in 2022.

On a more personal note, I would like to use this valedictory opportunity to thank my wonderful team, Jason, Jayden and Ciara. I apologise to Jason for all the breakdowns we have given him this year with all our wonderful demands. I welcome Jayden into the Assembly. He is just wrapping up his first full year and he has taken to it like a duck to water. I think that is what it is, or is it fish to water? Johnno, help me out here.

Mr Davis: Duck to water.

MS ORR: Duck to water is good? All right. He has taken to working in the Assembly like a duck to water. To Ciara, who moved into the office last year, put up the Christmas decorations and has not left, I look forward to her putting up the Christmas decorations this year and many, many more. Thank you. Merry Christmas and a happy New Year.

Valedictory

MS CHEYNE (Ginninderra—Assistant Minister for Economic Development, Minister for the Arts, Minister for Business and Better Regulation, Minister for Human Rights and Minister for Multicultural Affairs) (5.31): We are here and we get what we do done because of others—our staff, volunteers, directorates, counterparts and the community. This year the team I have worked with has grown considerably, taking on five portfolios.

Madam Speaker, I have always known just how hard the ACT public service works, but this year I have experienced it right up close. I spoke in the budget debate this week about how proud I am, but I want to reflect again that it is just the most enormous honour to be associated with a public service which is so professional, so committed, so thoughtful and so caring, in my portfolios and across the ACT public service. I have felt incredibly supported in what has been a year of triumphs and challenges, difficult but necessary decisions, and new, exciting initiatives. But, more importantly, the public service has been instrumental in sustaining this city. We are more connected than ever before.

I also want to thank the community at large for the support that they have shown each other, particularly the remarkable ways in which the community stepped up during lockdown, and Ms Orr gave some wonderful examples before. We have shown a commitment to each other with our vaccination rates, and we do talk about them a lot, but it is because it is really a celebration of exactly who we are and who we are to each other in this city. I just want to put on the record my own thanks for what a remarkable feat this is.

Thank you to my staff. To Joe Saunders, my chief of staff, who took the most significant leap of faith in coming on board. I told him it would be fun. I am not sure he would agree, after the year he has had, but we have had an incredible year together. I am just so lucky, Madam Speaker. His patience, his intelligence and his general


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