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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 5 Hansard (25 August) . . Page.. 1277 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

We are waiting. Mr Corbell, I understand, also used the word "leases" when he should have used the term "lease". Is that deliberate or misleading? Mr Speaker, language is an interesting thing and to be censured for the use of language and how it leads to a debate is very curious.

Mr Speaker, Ms Tucker spoke of the work that PALM is doing with the Hall residents, and will continue to do. None of what we are doing with the Hall residents is in the least inconsistent with rural residential. I only saw it once but Mr Whitcombe's plan considered issues like protecting Hall and its heritage and its environment. So that work that we have done has value and we will use it in the future.

Mr Corbell also stated that the Government had no reason to enter into an exclusive agreement. This is not correct either. As the Chief Minister has already pointed out, Mr Whitcombe brought the concept of the development, and the Government believed that he had brought the support of the Bolton family who had a 150-year association with the land.

Mr Speaker, I bought a block once. It has my house on it. It came with a lease and, depending on the context, I often use the terms interchangeably. I have even heard some senior public servants use the terms interchangeably. I have many friends in the rural community who talk about going down to their lease, or being on the block, or down on the farm, or in the back paddock. I think that is what this is about here today, Mr Speaker. Those opposite are in the back paddock. Perhaps those opposite are looking for a gate into the back paddock. They might be on the long paddock instead. We are here in the home paddock. We are running the show and they do not like it. Five months into the new government we have the same old face of the Opposition showing up. I guess we have to have analogies for those on the crossbenches. Perhaps Trevor is down in the river paddock making hay. Mr Rugendyke, with his hair cut, perhaps was shorn in the shorn paddock near the shed. This is what it is about, Mr Speaker. There is nothing in this.

I have heard nothing here today that has convinced me that the Opposition has even come close to substantiating the suggestion that either the Chief Minister or the Deputy Chief Minister was reckless, wilful or deliberate. When a basis for the proposal at Kinlyside could not go ahead we stopped. We simply did not proceed further. At that stage it was no more than an idea, and when it became an idea not worth pursuing we stopped. Yes, it was $109,000 worth of work which we will use, as opposed to the $20m that we have lost through Labor when Labor proceeded; when Labor was reckless with Harcourt Hill, when Labor was deliberate with Harcourt Hill. If we had persisted, that would have been reckless. If we had persisted, that would have been deliberate. We did not deliberately or recklessly proceed, unlike Labor with Harcourt Hill.

MR WOOD (4.52): Mr Speaker, I am going to give two speeches. I am going to give my speech and I am going to give the speech that Michael Moore will shortly deliver. More of that later when I dovetail my remarks to what Mr Moore will also say. But, first to my speech. The Government has mounted its defence on two grounds.

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