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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 8 Hansard (24 August) . . Page.. 2291 ..

MR HUMPHRIES: Maybe not, Mr Quinlan, but the fact is that we have articulated our policy. We have put it on the table. Only in the last few days we tabled a report by the Property Advisory Council to the ACT indicating the basis on which the Government directly deals with particular applicants for land. We have put it on the table in respect of those sorts of things.

Mr Corbell: Major national projects.

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, I know Mr Corbell is itching to get his question up, but if he will be patient enough I will first finish the answer to Ms Tucker's question. The criteria for that to happen had been laid out. We are working within those criteria. We have said that if there is a significant community benefit associated with a development, we will support it. That is what we have done in this case. Ms Tucker might say we should be seeking more from such developers and so on. She might be critical of it, but I look simply at the fact we have got $100,000 in additional benefit to the community from this process above and beyond what the valuers say is the market value of that land. I think that is worth taking. The Government is now going to see, as a result of this policy, development of the McKellar shops.

Fireworks Display

MR HARGREAVES: I direct my question to the Minister for Urban Services. The Minister would be aware of recent reports regarding the New Year's Eve fireworks display and the questions which have arisen regarding the contracting out of the service. The use of pontoons and barges on the lake is considered technical by the Dangerous Goods Branch and requires substantial documentation, experience and qualifications. Normally, to prove this sufficiently can take up to nine months. My question is this: How long did it take for Syd Howard Fireworks International to prove that it has the expertise to use pontoons and barges?

MR SMYTH: That is a good question. The tender process that was done was clear, clean and very thorough. Syd Howard Fireworks is one of the most reputable fireworks firms in the country. They have run some of the largest fireworks displays in the country and will continue to do so. We are very pleased that they will be running the one here on New Year's Eve. The tender process would have addressed all those issues, and I am very pleased with the way the tender was conducted.

MR HARGREAVES: I have a supplementary question. I thank the Minister for the brevity of his answer. Considering this Government's past record on tendering out and with similar events to do with crowds and explosives, you would expect everything to be 110 per cent squeaky clean. So, can the Minister say whether the successful tenderer has a licence for the intended display?

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, the successful tenderer will have to fulfil all the conditions to conduct that display. That will be part of the process.

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