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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 3 Hansard (23 March) . . Page.. 679 ..

Belconnen Leisure Centre

MR RUGENDYKE: Mr Speaker, my question is to the sports Minister, Mr Stefaniak. Minister, the feasibility study into the public costs and benefits of the proposed Belconnen leisure centre was due to be finalised in January of this year. Could you please advise the chamber whether the study has been completed, whether you have seen a copy of the study and when it will be released to the Assembly?

MR STEFANIAK: A very detailed study was carried out. The study has only just become available to government - I think it was on Friday - and is a fairly lengthy document. The Government will be considering it as soon as possible. I have had a very quick look at part of it. It is a very detailed and lengthy document, Mr Rugendyke. The answer to that is that it will be shortly available.

Police Force

MR HARGREAVES: My question is to the Minister for Justice and Community Safety. I refer to comments attributed to the Minister's speech to the current graduating class of police officers, as reported in the Sunday press. In these reports the Minister said that a separate police force for Canberra was now "at the forefront of the political agenda". The Minister also was reported as saying:

The time is here in the ACT where serious consideration is being -

is being -

given to the establishment of our own police force.

However, an article in Monday's press has the Minister playing down the issue. Even so, the Minister is reported as saying:

The Commonwealth has stated that it sees no future role for the AFP in community policing beyond 2001.

If the detailed comments attributed to the Minister are a true reflection of the Government's position in relation to the AFP and the current policing contract, can the Minister advise the Assembly what consultation, when and with whom led him to this position?


: Let me comment first of all on the question of reports in the Canberra Times about this matter. I will say by way of background that the Government has very clearly sent a signal that it considers that the community of the ACT needs to consider the question of whether a separate police force would better serve this community than the continuing relationship with the Australian Federal Police. It is not the first time that I have flagged that issue. Members will be aware that it has been a matter of debate, not just within the ranks of the Government, but indeed within the ranks of the Assembly. Members will recall that Mr Osborne chaired the Legal Affairs

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