Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 9 Hansard (23 November) . . Page.. 2489 ..
MR WHITECROSS (continuing):
Of course, when they were confronted with the fact that they had already been given up by the head of Emergency Services, who said that they did know about it, they said, "Oh, that proposal to close the fire stations? Oh, I remember that one. Now that you mention it, we did have a proposal. We let Emergency Services waste their resources in coming up with proposals to close fire stations, but under no circumstances would we implement them. We are just humouring them by letting them develop these proposals, but under no circumstances would we implement one of these proposals". "But, rest assured", the spokesperson for the Minister said, "if we can think of another excuse to close them, they are back on the agenda, and we will close Charnwood High then". It will be interesting to see how Mr Hird reacts to that, given his strong defence of Charnwood High School.
Mr Stefaniak: What has that to do with Emergency Services?
MR WHITECROSS: It has everything to do with Emergency Services. The representation that the citizens of Charnwood have had in relation to their high school does not bode well for their fire station. Madam Deputy Speaker, underlying these ideas about closing fire stations and underlying the ideas that Emergency Services management are developing is a complete abandonment of the approach to fighting fires that we have seen in the past when the emphasis was on getting to the fire as soon as possible. They say, "Oh, it does not matter if it takes a bit longer, because there will be more of us when we get there. It is bad luck that your house in on fire and that the fire doubles in size every minute, but when we get there there will be more of us on the truck".
Mr Connolly: So if the fire is twice as big there are twice as many firefighters?
MR WHITECROSS: No, unfortunately; not twice as many firefighters, Mr Connolly.
Mr Hird: They were thinking of closure.
Mr Stefaniak: Oh, they were going to close Charnwood Fire Station. I see. We are not. They were.
Mr Hird: Never mind about the rubbishing they are giving you and me. They are the ones.
MR WHITECROSS: No; I am sorry. No, we were not.
MADAM DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! Mr Hird, resume your seat. Order!
MR WHITECROSS: Madam Deputy Speaker, it is interesting to note that Mr Hird is not a unique example of the kind of representation the residents of Ginninderra can expect from the Liberal Party. Mr Stefaniak is every bit as talented as Mr Hird, and every bit as incisive as Mr Hird.