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MR WOOD (4.15): Mr Speaker, we have heard very good reasons to support the motion put by the Greens. I want to add to the emphasis given by Mr Connolly to some of those reasons, not the least of which is the importance of a political interest, sometimes a political direction, in what this instrumentality and others do. As Mr Connolly indicated, shortly after we took up our ministerial roles he and I became very concerned about repeated bypasses at ACTEW. I was concerned because I did not have confidence in the information I was receiving. I do not know to this day whether ACTEW knew what caused the bypasses. We seemed to get a reason one day, a different reason the next day, and another reason the following day.

As a result of that, I required, with Mr Connolly, a very strenuous audit to be carried out on ACTEW to assess how they were doing their job and what might need to be done to see that they performed better. As a result, changes were made, and it was clear that there were very few bypasses in the next couple of years - I think it happened once or twice - whereas there were six, seven or eight within a period of about two months. I never did get a satisfactory answer on those bypasses. In the case of recent bypasses, we hear that they are due to the influx of water from drainage systems illegally connected to the drains. That was one of the reasons I was given earlier on, and I do not know whether it is the case or not.

I was a bit concerned early in the life of this present Government when there seemed to be a number of bypasses. I did not know why this should emerge again. Was it purely coincidental that it arose so soon after a new Minister was appointed? It is important that that political perspective and that charge that Ministers can give to the body are able to be presented in such matters. I would like Mr De Domenico, as this debate proceeds, to indicate reasons for recent bypasses. If he is absolutely convinced that it is due to infiltration of water into the system, he may say so. Would he, in this debate today - I guess that it will go on beyond today, so it does not have to be done on this day - refute reports I have had that partially treated sewage is being trucked in tankers to Sydney to be burnt or to be disposed of? I would find that remarkable. It was a report that emerged recently from that area. We should at least dispel any such indication. Since the role of ACTEW is being assessed carefully, I want every assurance from the Minister that this political oversight will continue. I would appreciate some indication in this debate to allay my anxieties about how effectively ACTEW is working and whether they really are aware of some of those bypass problems. Are they aware of them and do they know what is causing them?

MR BERRY (4.19): Mr Kaine dragged himself to his feet a little while ago and put a great deal of energy into his view of the world in relation to the corporatisation of ACTEW. In the Alliance Government there was some sort of balance of power in favour of that philosophical commitment to corporatisation and privatisation, and the Alliance Government evaporated, for reasons that are a matter of public record. It then was an issue that Labor had to consider once it had been installed as the Government and the Executive in the Territory, and it was not something that we considered lightly. It was something that we considered against a background of need, a case being made out, and so on. In relation to need, it has never been established that

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