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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 6 Hansard (3 September) . . Page.. 1929 ..

MR QUINLAN (continuing):

I am further concerned to see that the Bureau of Sport is being absorbed into the Department of Education and that there is to be a review of the department's central office after it has been plugged in there, which seems again to be putting the cart before the horse a little. I am concerned as to the future of the Bureau of Sport overall.

There are a number of projects incorporated into this budget but there is further concern at the possibility that the Government may be backing away from some of the projects enumerated under the $6.3m capital injection. I specifically refer to Football Park, Phillip, where there has been a call for the ACTAFL to justify expenditure on lights. I would be happy to see ACTAFL and the Government negotiate on some changes and redirection in that funding if it is necessary, but I would not like to see that funding disappear off the slate.

I do trust that the Government notes the success of the one AFL game that we have had and acknowledges that we will not attract further AFL games unless we have facilities up to standard. We can get into a chicken-and-egg situation in that regard. AFL can come here and say, "The facilities are not up to standard, so we will not bring games here". Then if there are no AFL games coming here, people will ask, "Why are we going to invest in the stadium?". We do not seem to have much of a problem in investing in Bruce Stadium, so I encourage the Government to follow through with negotiations with AFL and with cricket in relation to Phillip and in relation to Manuka Oval to ensure that if those funds are there, if they have been earmarked within this clever and caring budget, they damn-well stay there, and they stay there to the benefit of those particular sports.

In a more general sense, I repeat what I have said in relation to sport for the masses. We should ensure that we do not simply focus on the elite sports and publicised events. I close by repeating my opening remarks. I am in this debate to debate the Government's priorities as much as anything else. I feel that that is my responsibility. I was very disappointed to hear Mr Rugendyke's speech.

MS TUCKER (5.32): I am also disappointed and actually quite alarmed to have heard Mr Rugendyke's speech. It does not surprise me. It clarifies for me what I have suspected and been concerned about. Mr Rugendyke seems to have an inherent respect for government that is alarming in a crossbench politician people thought they were electing to scrutinise the government of the day.

Mr Moore: He is going to scrutinise. He is going to guarantee the budget. It is logical. He has taken responsibility, which you have not done.

MS TUCKER: I like the interjection from Mr Moore. I will answer Mr Moore's interjection in a minute.

Mr Corbell: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. Mr Rugendyke was heard in silence by members on this side of the chamber, as was Mr Moore. I think Mr Moore should have the courtesy to hear Ms Tucker in silence as she responds to Mr Rugendyke.

MR SPEAKER: I uphold the point of order.

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