Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 7 Hansard (20 June) . . Page.. 1980 ..
MR DE DOMENICO (Minister for Urban Services) (12.01), in reply: I thank Mr Wood and the Opposition for supporting the Bill. I agree with Mr Wood. The first thing I asked was, "What is going to happen if something goes wrong?". I recall the problems Mr Wood referred to. I think some concrete slabs were not built to specification. I can assure you that I will be closely monitoring the situation, Mr Wood, and making sure that we come down with a sledge-hammer, if we need to, if people do not comply with regulations. I agree that we need to monitor electrical installations very closely. I thank the Assembly for its support.
Question resolved in the affirmative.
Bill agreed to in principle.
Leave granted to dispense with the detail stage.
Bill agreed to.
QUESTIONS WITHOUT NOTICE
MR WHITECROSS: Mr Speaker, my question without notice is to Mr De Domenico in his capacity as Minister for Business. Minister, I refer to your decision to defund Jobline and your subsequent decision to arrange bridging finance to keep Jobline operating for a few weeks while you contract a consultant from Bird Cameron, for a fee of $5,000, to establish whether Jobline can be turned into a profit-making organisation. Minister, the ACT Treasury manual stipulates the procedures that must be followed when awarding contracts of up to $5,000. The options for doing so include to "obtain competitive oral quotations; or written quotations if judged necessary by the officer selecting the method of purchase; or to purchase the goods or services available on existing contracts". Which of these, specifically, was followed when awarding the contract to Bird Cameron?
MR DE DOMENICO: I thank Mr Whitecross for his question. Mr Whitecross was bleating in the media about 21/2 minutes after the initial meeting with Jobline. Mr Speaker, if people have patience and if they make themselves aware of the facts, usually things settle down differently from what people perceive first of all. In terms of the specific question Mr Whitecross asked me, he would also realise that there is a particular stipulation there that, if people have particular expertise in doing things, we are also able to consider that when awarding contracts. Mr Whitecross should be aware that the particular firm, Bird Cameron, has specific expertise in doing these sorts of things and is used by many similar organisations. We believe in always spending money wisely. We think that, if people have a particular expertise and we need to get a job done quickly, it is better to make use of that expertise, which we have done in this instance.