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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 8 Hansard (24 August) . . Page.. 2281 ..

MS CARNELL: No, it was not a mistake to do what we did when we came to government and that was to move Treasury into the Chief Minister's Department. That has been proven categorically. We moved Treasury in because significant reform was needed right across government, and that reform needed to be driven centrally. We moved to full accrual accounting in a 12-month period. Those opposite had spent the previous three years spending enormous amounts of money on consultants to try to implement accrual accounting but had not got to the starting line. They had not even got to the starting line after hundreds of thousands of dollars had been spent on consultants to implement accrual accounting. We decided that we needed to drive that reform quickly, efficiently and centrally. So we moved Treasury into the Chief Minister's Department to achieve accrual accounting in an implementation period that no other State has even come close to in terms of time frames. We got accrual accounting up in just over - - -

Mr Berry: You were just mimicking a Labor initiative. That is all you were doing. You cannot get out of it.

MR SPEAKER: Quiet, please.

MS CARNELL: We got accrual accounting up in just over a 12-month period. We went to outputs-based budgeting.

Mr Stanhope: All the work had been done.

MS CARNELL: Mr Stanhope says that all the work had been done. Mr Speaker, the problem was that no work had been done, absolutely nothing. The only thing that had been done was that there had been lots of cheques sent to consultants. Absolutely nothing had happened. That was the problem.

Mr Corbell: Your record on consultants is not that flash.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Order, please!

Mr Humphries: Mr Speaker, I rise on a point of order. There has been a continuous barrage of comments and interjections from those opposite.

MR SPEAKER: I know. There has been, and if I cannot hear I shall have to ask the Chief Minister to repeat the answer in full.

MS CARNELL: I would be very happy to do so. Mr Speaker, I know we should never respond to interjections, but Mr Hargreaves made a comment about our performance on consultants.

MR SPEAKER: I do not think so. I think it was somebody else, Chief Minister.

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, we have reduced consultancy expenditure quite significantly - I think by about 20 per cent - since we came to government, so let us be fair on these things.

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