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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 9 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 2465 ..

Ms Follett: Sack them. We have already heard that one.

MRS CARNELL: Contracts usually are not for people who are on staff, surprising as it may seem. We will make sure that we get back to core business. So yes, what we are talking about here is a reduction of $150,000. You can compare that with the over $200,000 reduction by Ms Follett last year; but that reduction came to nothing. The libraries overspent by $610,000 because Ms Follett did not put in place the necessary changes that needed to be instigated if the library budget was going to come in on target and provide services to the community. We will achieve those efficiencies so that we can make sure that people get proper library services - something that we believe, too, is one of the most important parts of a civilised community.

MR BERRY (10.54): Mr Speaker, what a load of old rhetoric! You get proper library services, according to the Liberal Party, with a categorical commitment that they are going to reduce services.

Mrs Carnell: I just said we were not.

MR BERRY: Like Mr Osborne, I would not try to hold you to a commitment anyway. Did I hear you say that all the existing libraries - - -

Mrs Carnell: Existing sites and opening hours.

MR BERRY: The existing sites and opening hours. Well, I hear your undertaking; but I have seen your performance thus far, and I will not be shocked if you do not stand by it, and neither would the community.

Mr Whitecross: They were not going to close any schools, Wayne.

MR BERRY: No, they were not going to close any schools either. Yes, that was a good one. They are just going to strangle them to death. That is the line that the Liberals have taken. "It is not my fault.", Mrs Carnell will always say; "It is not my fault. It is somebody else's fault".

I want to respond to something that Ms Tucker raised in relation to this matter. I think Ms Tucker tried to rechisel the tablets of stone. History is cast in stone and it is not that easy to rechisel. The situation here is that this is not our government and it is not our budget. If we had our way this budget would not be occurring. It is wrong, I think, and unfair to claim that it is the Labor Party's fault that the community are going to be impacted by this budget. The people who supported this Government are the ones who are going to have to wear the responsibility for that; not us, because we did not support it. I think everybody here will have the opportunity this evening to support or to reject this Government's budget. Some say that that means supporting or rejecting the Government. Well, we reject the Government. We think the Government is lousy. We think they are doing a lousy job and we know that the community agree with us.

Mr De Domenico: How do you know that?

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