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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 7 Hansard (1 July) . . Page.. 1931 ..

MS CARNELL (continuing):

In the broader context, the ACT and subregion community planning framework has been developed and is currently with the subregion councils for comment. It identifies how and when to use regional planning and community-based planning. The Territory Plan is also to be updated. The objective of the Territory Plan is to ensure that the planning of the Territory provides the people of the Territory with an ecologically sustainable, healthy, attractive, safe and efficient environment in which to work, live and have their recreation. So, Mr Speaker, the plans are there, except that we do not have a single, static document. (Extension of time granted)

The Government is particularly aware of the need to ensure that it takes into account the needs of the community. For this reason, it established the customer involvement unit in order to improve community consultation and to ensure that customer needs are being met. The consultation protocol is extensively used by both community and government agencies. A key outcome of this initiative has been the number of consultation strategies planned and developed by agencies. These strategies have increased threefold over the past year. The customer involvement unit also reports on its meetings with the community, which helps to inform the Government of customer needs and government performance.

Finally, Mr Speaker, I wish to restate the Government's view on the sustainable operating result. Merely achieving a balanced operating result is not enough. In order to guard against any unforeseen economic circumstances and to pay for debt servicing and capital investments, this surplus needs to be substantial, otherwise borrowings and asset sales will still be required to fund capital investment even if the budget is in balance. However, these results will not be achieved without careful and responsible financial management.

Mr Speaker, I would like to state again the Government's disappointment with some areas of the committee's report. I make the point that making comments in a report suggesting that there is an increasing social deficit in the ACT without any data whatsoever to back them up - in fact, all the data that is on the table suggests that that is not the case - is probably not in the best interests of this Assembly. Mr Speaker, I commend the Government's response to this Assembly.

Debate (on motion by Mr Corbell ) adjourned.

Motion (by Mr Humphries , by leave) agreed to:

That the resumption of debate be made an order of the day for consideration immediately after the resolution relating to the conclusion of consideration of order of the day No. 6, Executive business, relating to the Appropriation Bill 1999-2000.


MS CARNELL (Chief Minister and Treasurer) (10.53): Mr Speaker, I present the Appropriation (Bruce Stadium and CanDeliver Limited) Bill 1999, together with its explanatory memorandum.

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