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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 7 Hansard (30 June) . . Page.. 1902 ..

MR BERRY (continuing):

Government briefed somebody? It strikes me as curious. It seems to me that if this was to stay here we would be saying to the Government, "Well, we don't want you to brief people that way", and that is the point we make. We are expressing a serious concern about the failure of the ACT Government and so on.

Okay. Let us move on then, if that is not what is worrying the Government. Let us move to paragraph (4), which the Minister seeks to exclude. It says:

urges the Minister for Urban Services to fulfil all of his obligations under the leasing arrangements as a matter of urgency.

Has the Minister briefed anybody to ensure that we do not fulfil any of our obligations in relation to the matter? If the Minister has, what we are saying to him is that he should say, "No, that is not the way we want to go. We want to fulfil our obligations". This seems to me to be an artificial curtain to hide behind in relation to the matter. If there is some reason why you cannot argue the case in relation to the amendment, you really can use the same logic to prohibit the introduction of it.

It strikes me, Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker, that there is something very curious going on here. There is certainly not enough reason for the amendment to succeed. I think this is an expression of a view of the Assembly which we would ask the Government to take note of. It is a call on the Minister to do certain things. It is not a direction, it is a call, and we would expect him to take note of that too. It is curious that the Minister is submitting an amendment to strike out those expressions of views but will not argue the case. I would like to hear what he has to say in support of it.

MS TUCKER (10.33): I also am a little bit confused by this. The Temporary Deputy Speaker has told me I have to be careful about this because it might be sub judice, but I have no idea why, or of which bits I need to be careful about. I am finding it a bit hard to know what I am allowed to say and what I am not allowed to say. The Minister has put an amendment but you cannot argue it, and we have to be very careful about how we respond to his amendment because it might be sub judice. So I agree absolutely with Mr Berry. Why on earth did he put the amendment up?

Anyway, just generally, I will make a comment. I will not be supporting the Minister's amendment, and I will be putting an amendment of my own if Mr Smyth's is not successful. I might just speak to the motion generally at this point as well. The Greens are a little bit concerned about the sport of drag-racing anyway, which basically involves speeding as fast as possible down a quarter-mile track. It is a waste of petrol and a huge generator of noise. Basically, I cannot see that we have to be so enthusiastic about something just because it brings money into the Territory. Obviously, as a member of the Greens party, I have to take into account broader issues such as the environment. Also, in assessing a contribution of a particular activity to human welfare, we cannot just use as an indicator always how much money it brings into the Territory.

However, despite all that, I have sympathy with the organisation if they have been really badly treated, as it seems, for a long time; so I will be supporting paragraph (4) of Mr Corbell's motion which urges the Minister to fix up the mess, but I will only do that if I can get the first three paragraphs deleted, which is basically my amendment.

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