Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 3 Hansard (28 March) . . Page.. 837 ..
MS HORODNY (4.45): I ask for leave to move a motion relating to the ACT Legislative Assembly's support of the National Museum at Yarramundi Reach.
MS HORODNY: I move:
That this Assembly:
(1) supports the new Federal Government's policy on building the National Museum at Yarramundi Reach; and
(2) calls on the Chief Minister to write to the Prime Minister urging him to abide by the policy and commence work on the National Museum at Yarramundi Reach.
I bring this issue forward today because I believe that there is an urgency in finding out from the Federal Government just what is going on about the National Museum, and to reinforce our desire - I believe that it is probably the desire of this whole Assembly - that the Yarramundi site be used for this museum. Mr Humphries spoke earlier this afternoon about his discussions with the new Minister for Territories, Warwick Smith; so he may know something more about this issue.
Ms McRae: Mr Speaker, has the motion been circulated?
MR SPEAKER: It is being circulated now.
MS HORODNY: There are copies of it. There is urgency over this matter because I believe that if the National Museum is now to be built at Yarramundi, as promised by the Liberal Government at the Federal election, the Kingston-Acton land swap agreement is thrown into complete disarray. This land swap agreement was predicated on the use of Acton Peninsula for part of the National Museum - that is, the Gallery of Aboriginal Australia. If this is not going ahead on Acton we are back to square one regarding the Acton site and the use that it should be put to.
Regarding the museum itself, the Greens are urging the Federal Liberal Government, and I hope that the Assembly supports this motion, to stick to its promise to build this National Museum at Yarramundi. We are very concerned that they may renege on this promise. Yesterday Warwick Smith, the new Federal Minister for Territories, said on the ABC that the Federal Government intends to spend $11/2m on investigating yet again a site for the National Museum. We have had investigations for over 10 years now on where this museum should be sited and all the reports have favoured Yarramundi.
The National Museum was established by legislation in 1980 and we are still waiting to see the buildings. This is really a national disgrace, I believe. The museum will fulfil an important role in Australia by expressing in a coherent and accessible way what it is to be an Australian, and the historical influences that shaped our society. This will be of significant interest not only to the Australian people but also to visitors to this country.