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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 13 Hansard (5 December) . . Page.. 4562 ..



Question No. 343

Disability Services - John Knight Hostel Residents

Ms Tucker - asked the Minister for Health and Community Care upon notice on 20 November 1996

In relation to disability services -

(1) How much was budgeted for the relocation of residents when John Knight Hostel was closed.

(2) How much did it cost to relocate clients.

MRS CARNELL - the answer to the Member's question is:

(1) The only additional funding for the relocation of residents from John Knight Hostel was a non-recurrent amount of $78 000 in the 1994/95 ACT Budget, for purchase of furniture and whitegoods. The whole of this amount was expended.

Other costs for relocation of residents were expected to be met from within the existing Disability Program budget.

(2) The John Knight Hostel closure and relocation process took place over approximately 12 months. The costs involved in this particular process are not separately identified in the Program budget or in accounts and financial records because they are part of the cost of providing an ongoing service to Program clients.

The majority of additional `other operating' costs of the transition period were absorbed in the Program budget, however increased salary costs through the transition period contributed to an overspend in the Program budget in 1995/96.

The new arrangements involve some increased costs, in particular because of the need to provide staff in a greater number of locations, including sleepover costs. This increase in staffing is necessary in order to provide more individually focused services to clients in more homelike surroundings. The current industrial reform in the Disability Program is expected to lead to more realistic staffing costs and more flexible arrangements to meet individual needs.

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