Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 9 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 2444 ..
MS McRAE (continuing):
out there are going to have the appropriate support, which must come from beyond the school - this is the budget he administers - the ACT Academy of Sport, the support to Sports House, the support to sporting organisations. There is absolutely no integration in this budget with the demands he is placing on the schools. I do not find this to be in any way convincing.
This Minister wants to improve the level of participation; he wants to wake Canberra up and get people out and running. How can he then turn around and deliver a budget in the sport, recreation and racing area and give absolutely no clear indication of how many ovals will be needed, what sort of sporting resources will be needed in terms of changing goalposts, nets for hockey, basketball rings, tennis courts, and whatever else he thinks people should be out and about and doing things on, even rugby union training facilities. There is no indication of how within this budget those extra demands that will naturally flow from the pressure that is being put on schools are going to be met. There is not even an indication of how the sporting associations that are being asked to assist, and quite gladly are part of that, are going to be able to meet the demands of schools to provide more umpires, to provide more coaches, to provide more support. There is absolutely no indication in this budget.
This is a superficial budget that seems to have been created in total isolation from the other policy initiatives that are being so forcefully pressed in other areas. We find that the overarching drive is for greater efficiency, with no detail about what sort of contracting out we are talking about. We have no idea whatsoever of how the expenses that will result to the individual are going to be met, how the individuals who cannot deal with extra expenses are going to be protected. Then we find that, where something does happen in the area of swimming pools, it is an outrageous policy that again shows no regard for the type of people who most need this public facility. The Minister has no concern whatsoever for them, but in time will say, "Oh dear, oh dear; what a pity more people do not participate in sporting activity in the ACT. It would be much better for everyone if they were out swimming or running or jumping or playing tennis or rugby", or whatever it is he wants them to do. But too bad if they cannot afford it, too bad if the facilities are not there, too bad if the contracting out results in it being much too expensive, and too bad if the sporting groups that want to assist with all of this simply do not have the funds to do it. Minister, I think there is a lot more explanation needed to convince anybody that this budget is good for anyone and in any way will substantially support the initiatives of which you are so proud in the education sector.
MR OSBORNE (9.39): I rise to support a number of the issues Ms McRae has raised, especially about school sport. We will differ on a couple of issues. A lot of people ask me where I got this physique from, and I have to say that a lot of hard work went into it, but I am a big fan of school sport. I do have some reservations about making sport compulsory because I am aware that there are a number of people who - I do not know why - just do not like sport. I cannot explain it, but we need to take into consideration these poor unfortunates. On a serious note, although I am a fan of school sport, we need to be very conscious that some people just are not sports oriented.