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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 1 Hansard (30 April) . . Page.. 241 ..

MS CARNELL (continuing):

or their schedules for the next 12 months, waiting lists go up. In January, February and March, we then get on with addressing them, just as we did last year. We should never forget that over the term of the last Government we did reduce waiting lists by some 20 per cent - something that no other government has done.

I ask that all further questions be placed on the notice paper.

Playground Equipment

MR SMYTH: I would like to add to an answer that I gave yesterday to Mr Hargreaves. The member from Brindabella asked yesterday for further information on playgrounds in the ACT. I have further information. There are approximately 440 playgrounds in the ACT. Obviously, as the city expands, we will continue to build more. All of these playgrounds conform to the relevant standards in force at the time of construction. Draft Australian standards specific to playgrounds have been under development for some 10 years and are currently still under review by Standards Australia. We are progressively upgrading our playgrounds to meet these draft standards. All playgrounds are inspected fortnightly for safety.

Mr Speaker, any safety issues which are identified in this inspection process and which require maintenance are attended to immediately. There is a continuing upgrade program for playgrounds which is managed by Canberra Urban Parks. The program is progressively reviewing the equipment facilities in all playgrounds and the program replacement or refurbishment as necessary to be consistent with the draft Australian standards being developed. This case is very much like the motor industry, for instance, where Australian standards are being continually reviewed. New vehicles are required to meet these standards, whilst older vehicles which were deemed to meet the standard requirement, if they continue to meet the standard in place at the time of construction, are not required to be modified to meet the new standard. In the case of the playgrounds, the Government is adopting a proactive approach and is renewing the playground facilities as the standards are being developed. In programming upgrading work ahead of the standards being officially adopted, the Government is ensuring that the facilities available to our children meet the highest standards available.

Building Industry - Training Levy

MS CARNELL: In question time on Tuesday I undertook to provide Mr Osborne with complete information regarding the use of funds provided by the Long Service Leave Construction Industry Training Fund to assist apprentices and trainees in the construction industry. I would like to table the letter which I sent to Mr Osborne yesterday which provided further information about the matters he raised. Upon reflection, I believe this letter may be of interest to other members in this place, particularly given a very grubby interjection by Mr Berry during question time yesterday.

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