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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 3 Hansard (25 March) . . Page.. 909 ..

SouthCare Helicopter

(Question No. 102)

Mr Hargreaves

asked the Minister for Justice and Community Safety, upon notice:

In relation to the SouthCare Helicopter.

(1) Who is responsible for the funding?

(2) What are the average daily running costs.?

(3) How much money to date has been donated to the helicopter including:

(a) who donated the money?

(b) how much?

(4) Is the helicopter registered as a charitable organisation and if so does the Government give special consideration to it above other charities?

Mr Humphries

: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

(1) The funding is underwritten by NSW and ACT Governments on a 90/10 sharing agreement. The agreement is to be reviewed after two years operation based on actual usage in each jurisdiction.

(2) The estimated operating cost of the service is approximately $2.3m per annum, but this is dependant on operating hours. An average daily operating cost is not available.

(3) (a) Donations to SouthCare have been received from surrounding Shire Councils, community groups such as Rotary and Apex, and from individuals. Other contributions have been made in kind, such as an offer of rent-free accommodation by the Canberra International Airport.

(b) The total cash amount received as at 22 March 1999 is $93,859, however, $67,840 from Rotary is committed to the base facility. The contribution in kind received to date or committed is in excess of $750,000.

(4) An application has been made by the Trust Fund to the Australian Taxation Office for public benevolent institution status which is being considered by the ATO. I do not understand what the member means by asking if the Government gives it "special consideration" above other charities.

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