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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 11 Hansard (8 December) . . Page.. 3220 ..

MR WOOD: Mr Speaker, I have a supplementary question. I guess that there was not an answer to the question on whether restraining orders are a desirable way to maintain departmental policy. Given that in my belief, and I think it is sustainable, that this person has unresolved and legitimate grievances in a whole range of matters but particularly in the case of the incidents at the tip, will the Minister intervene - I think he has been generous in what he has said so far - to try to ease the tension that exists?

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, I am not sure how much I can intervene once it gets to the court. I am certainly not in favour of imposing policy through restraining orders, but if individuals wish to take out restraining orders or take action against the department, the department certainly has the right to defend itself. This is a very complicated matter. There is not just one order. There are a couple of cases here and some countercases. It is very complex. I do not seek to hide, as it were, behind the sub judice rule, but the advice to me from the Attorney-General is that this is something that should be left at this stage to the court to handle. In a general sense, I certainly do not believe that we should be resorting to restraining orders and court orders and taking to court matters that should be resolved sensibly, but on some days in certain cases you may well get to a position where this is the only way for them to travel. Unfortunately, this one is travelling that path.

Olympic Soccer - Drug Testing

MR RUGENDYKE: My question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, there have been reports in the media that soccer is one of the sports yet to comply with the IOC's drug testing regulations for the Sydney 2000 Olympics. The IOC has made it clear that if soccer does not comply it will be cut from the Olympic program. I would like to know whether the Government is aware of this situation and, if it is, what response has been undertaken to ensure that the ACT's investment in Bruce Stadium to acquire Olympic soccer is not wasted.

MS CARNELL: I am very confident that the negotiations that are going on between FIFA and SOCOG and the Olympic organisation generally will come to fruition. I think it is important to remember that of all Olympic sports soccer attracts most television viewers worldwide. I do not think anybody, including SOCOG or FIFA, can afford for these negotiations not to be successful. Soccer is a major Olympic sport. Bruce Stadium, from their perspective, might be one of the smallest issues, but from our perspective it is a very major issue. We will certainly be doing everything in our power to ensure that it is a drugs-free games.

MR RUGENDYKE: Mr Speaker, as a supplementary question, I ask the Chief Minister: Could you confirm or deny the rumour that the redevelopment of Bruce Stadium is now projected to blow out from $27m to $40m?

MS CARNELL: I will deny that rumour.

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

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