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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 10 Hansard (12 October) . . Page.. 2948 ..

MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

like this, as Ms Tucker quite properly put it, the buck has to stop somewhere. It cannot just go revolving around the hallowed halls of power and the bureaucracy; it has to stop with this Minister.

What we are seeing here is a really significant public health issue, and it is not the first one at Belconnen. There have been at least three that I can think of. This one stands out like a beacon. I think if anything is going to glow in the dark, Mr Hird, it is going to be Belconnen tip. Perhaps this Government ought to have been a little bit more alert to this. When the issue first came to light this Minister should have said, "Right, close it, and then we will do the testing". He should not have let it go on for three more weeks. That is a truth denied by this Government. Mr Moore suggested that that was not the case, but then corrected himself. It went on for another three weeks. That was nothing short of irresponsible. You can say that if a Minister does not know about it because his advisers have not told him, fine; but in this case he knew about it three weeks before. He allowed the people to go in here.

We saw the picture of Ms Tucker sitting up on top of the hill. How come? It was because a whole stack of people down at the bottom of the hill were still dumping rubbish or collecting it. Because there is no recycling they take it home again. I think that was an absolutely stupid thing to say, and I ask people to support the original motion.

MR RUGENDYKE (12.10): Mr Speaker, this motion seriously devalues the concept of the censure motion. It makes a mockery of the odd occasion when this Assembly finds the need to censure the Government on more serious matters. Mr Corbell claims that people have been poisoned by lead.

Mr Corbell: No, I said it was a risk. I did not claim that.

Mr Kaine: Lead does not glow in the dark.

MR SPEAKER: Order! Mr Rugendyke, please continue.

MR RUGENDYKE: Mr Speaker, about 25 years ago I was a roof plumber and I dealt with sheets of lead this size on a daily basis.

Mr Quinlan: And it has not affected you.

MR RUGENDYKE: I hope I am okay. I hope I have not been poisoned by lead. I certainly doubt that I have been poisoned by the little bits of stuff that have been chewed up, dumped there and hosed down and covered up. I do not think they would hurt me when I am tipping out my rubbish. I do not think Mr Stanhope was quite correct in saying that this stuff has blown all over my electorate. I think it is a fairly long bow that he has drawn there. Mr Speaker, what about pensioners who are living in houses with lead based paint? I brought that to the attention of the Minister and those houses are being bulldozed.

Mr Speaker, I believe it is appropriate at this point to move my amendment to Mr Kaine's amendments. I move:

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