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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 9 Hansard (31 August) . . Page.. 2609 ..

MS CARNELL (continuing):

Mr Speaker, with regard to the project, we will see the tracks up and running next year in Canberra. The sum of $5m will be spent on this test track. Mr Speaker, I will finish by doing something of which those opposite do the opposite regularly, that is, by congratulating the public servants who have been part of this project, particularly George Tomlins, who has done a huge amount of work in this area with regard to Speedrail and the airport. This just shows again the quality of the people involved. Also, I wish to recognise the work done by Bruce Sinclair, a Canberra engineer who is on the board of Bishop Austrans. He has worked very closely with us to ensure that Canberra gets the appropriate recognition for this important project.

Again, I think that this project shows the importance of the ACT Government being proactive, not reactive, as those opposite are. This project would not have come to Canberra if we were not out there marketing Canberra as a great R$D destination, a good business destination and a place in which it is easy to do business.

MR HIRD: Mr Speaker, I was not going to rise with a supplementary question, but I have had enough of the crew over there. They laugh and joke at the expense of good people who work bloody hard, such as Mr Murphy. They just laugh and joke about these things, sir. Chief Minister, did the Labor Party have anything to do with bringing this multimillion dollar project to Canberra and the jobs that will result for not only the ACT but also the region?

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, that is a very easy question to answer. No; and, thank goodness, in this particular instance they did not undermine it, either.

Bega Flats - Drug Trafficking

MR KAINE: Mr Speaker, my question is to the Minister for Justice and Community Safety and relates in a way to the question that Mr Osborne asked earlier of the Minister for Urban Services. Minister, are you aware of the concerns of many residents of the Bega Flats who report that they are living under a reign of terror because of the apparently unimpeded drug trafficking going on there? What steps is the Government taking to ensure the enforcement of the law relating to the distribution, sale and use of illegal drugs, especially heroin, in the vicinity of the Bega Flats?

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, I thank Mr Kaine for that question. I am happy to indicate that the Government believes that dealing in drugs is an issue of the utmost seriousness and actively supports the AFP in its efforts to ensure that those who seek to profit from the misery of those who are addicted are apprehended and brought to justice as quickly and as effectively as possible. I have to say that I tend to avoid using phrases like "reign of terror" in connection with parts of the ACT. I do not think that any part of the ACT is subject to a reign of terror or ever has been. I hope that members of this place will not give currency to hyperbole of that kind by making such assertions.

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