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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 5 Hansard (6 May) . . Page.. 1563 ..

MR MOORE: No. The fact that you cannot read the budget papers and cannot assess that a number of allied health jobs with the hospital are transferred to Community Care shows that there have not been, as you claimed in the media and claimed here, a cut of over 350 jobs. It simply did not happen, and it is not in the budget. You misunderstood it, Mr Berry. You got it wrong, as you get so many other things wrong.

It is the same with the cuts to school education. It is wrong. There is no cut to school education. Yes, Mr Berry, there may be some transfer of places within the schooling system and yes, there may be fewer teachers in the college system. A judgment has been made that it is more important to have those teachers in the high school sector, in the primary school sector or in special areas. Mr Berry, that was never my promise. Go back to my platform and what I have said before. I said that the school education budget - - -

Mr Berry: You said that if a government cuts education funding to schools then it will have a no-confidence motion.

MR MOORE: Mr Berry, I am sick of being misrepresented on this. I am sick of you misleading the house on this and I am sick of other people misleading the community on it. I have a very clear - - -

Mr Berry: I have to raise a point of order, Mr Speaker.

MR SPEAKER: You do, and I uphold it.

MR MOORE: Mr Speaker, I withdraw any imputation. I made a very clear-cut promise. It is in writing. I made a clear-cut promise and I have stayed by that promise. I have never moved from that promise. It remains. It has been clear and I have not for one minute - - -

Mr Berry: Nobody believes you.

MR MOORE: If Mr Berry wants to build a straw man and continue misleading the community in that way, that is up to him. Very few other people would be able to lie straight in their bed having gone through that type of misleading of the community. The difficulty the Opposition have is that they have before them a very sensible budget. They have difficulty in criticising a very sensible budget, because it is just that - it is sensible. It is not a flamboyant budget. It was designed specifically to tackle the operating loss, and full marks go to the Chief Minister for the work she has done in managing to achieve that.

Mr Speaker, it is a caring budget. I am very proud of the money that has gone into disabilities. I am particularly proud of that million dollars. If Senator Newman is able to deliver on the indications the Federal Government has given, that should turn into another couple of million dollars as well to meet the unmet need. Ministers agree that there is an unmet need of $293m Australia-wide, as identified by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare. These are the sorts of things we are interested in and these are the sorts of things we are concerned about. It is not a matter of just tackling the operating loss for some esoteric reason and saying, "Okay, now we do not have an operating loss".

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