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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1995 Week 11 Hansard (14 December) . . Page.. 3043 ..

Ms McRae: You have moved them all to Belconnen.

MRS CARNELL: I am sorry; you moved them all to Belconnen, or, alternatively, the doctors left because they did not have leases on their premises. We will give it a go. We will see whether we can bring other health facilities, other people, into the centre. Obviously, we would also be looking at community groups and so on, to see whether we can make the centre break even. If we can break even it means we can do what I want to do, and that is spend health dollars on health services.

MS HORODNY: Can you also assure the Assembly that ancillary staff will remain at existing levels?

MRS CARNELL: Ancillary staff will not stay at existing levels. As Ms Horodny would realise, we are moving and have already offered redundancy payments to a number of ancillary staff. Again, what we will be doing is using health dollars on health services, not on a whole lot of administration that we believe we can do more efficiently by having it centralised.

Business Confidence

MR WOOD: My question is to Mr De Domenico. Notwithstanding the Chief Minister's announcement just a few minutes ago, statistics suggest that all is not well for ACT business. This morning, on one of the radio programs, you seemed to blame the coming elections for that and acknowledged the problem. Minister, a survey by the Canberra Business Council issued yesterday records that a whopping 42 per cent of ACT businesses find that they are marginally or considerably worse off than at this time last year. The Canberra Business Council survey confirms the Yellow Pages Australia "Small Business Index" outlook for the ACT for the three months to November, which also reports that confidence in the ACT in business is below the national average with activity levels subdued. So much for the so-called "open for business" approach. Minister, since these surveys reveal an alarming decline in confidence since you came to government, will you reverse your destructive policies or give the job to somebody else?

MR DE DOMENICO: May I answer the second question first, Mr Speaker? The answer to the second question is, "Of course not". In answer to the first question, Mr Wood must have read a different survey from what I did. This is the official Canberra Business Council survey, Mr Wood. Mr Speaker, no-one can deny that it has been a difficult year - - -

Mr Wood: It says 42 per cent.

MR DE DOMENICO: You might want to listen to this, Mr Wood; you might learn something. You were there for five years. You sat on your hands. There were 700 new jobs, Mr Speaker, during the last year of the Follett Labor Government. Since March this year there have been 6,700 new jobs. Sit back, listen and take note, Mr Wood; you might learn something.

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