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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 4 Hansard (22 April) . . Page.. 1164 ..

MR SPEAKER: Order, please! You might learn something if you are quiet. I certainly want to hear the answer.

MS CARNELL: Right now, as a result of the national electricity market, ACTEW has lost about 8 per cent of the total energy it normally sells in the ACT. In terms of the amount that is currently contestable, however, that represents a loss of almost 20 per cent, Mr Speaker.

By way of offset though, ACTEW has been able to recover some 75 per cent of new energy by picking up customers from interstate, but here is the crunch, Mr Speaker. In order to win that business it has had to virtually set its profit margin at zero. So the only way that they are managing to keep the level of electricity up is to get new clients at no profit. Those opposite must understand that this is not a sustainable future, so what do they think should be done? We know what they think should not be done, but they have not put on the table one idea.

Mr Berry: Mr Speaker, pursuant to standing order 116, I would like to answer a question that was just put to me by the Chief Minister. She asked, "How is it, Mr Berry, that - - -

MR SPEAKER: I am sorry; that is out of order.

Mr Humphries: Mr Speaker, this is not a point of order and there is no entitlement to make a claim under standing order 116.

Mr Stanhope: No, she asked the question. I heard her ask it.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Standing order 116 states:

Questions may be put to a Member, not being a Minister, relating to any bill, motion or other public matter connected with the business of the Assembly, of which the Member has charge.

The only charge that you may have is a charge of obstructing the Assembly.

Mr Berry: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. The Chief Minister referred to a letter of mine which I clearly have charge of which was sent - - -

Mr Hird: Standing order 46 is what you should use.

Mr Berry: Let me finish.

Mr Humphries: Mr Speaker, I take a point of order. Mr Berry is providing information which he should provide, if he wants to, by way of standing order 46.

MR SPEAKER: Indeed, he can. It does not come under standing order 116, Mr Berry.

Mr Berry: Well, how is it that the question was put to me?

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