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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 11 Hansard (21 October) . . Page.. 3456 ..

MS CARNELL (continuing):

what sort of capacity there is for them to grow in the ACT. I think this sort of marketing is absolutely essential if we are to change many people's views that Canberra is not a business city. We know that it must be, and we believe it is, but we have to market that.

MR WOOD: I have a supplementary question. The Chief Minister indicated that she would give us a breakdown of that figure, and I would appreciate that. She might do the same for these other items I mention. Can you tell us, at least in broad terms again, the nature of other expenditure in the department's financial statements, specifically the $596,000 spent on donations, sponsorships and contributions, and the $471,000 spent on a payment to SOCOG?

MS CARNELL: Mr Speaker, we know about the SOCOG payments because they have all been spoken about on many occasions. As we know, the guarantee to SOCOG is payable over, I think, three years, or maybe it is over two years. All of those figures have been on the table for a very long period.

With regard to donations and other things, there are a large number that are entered into by the Government, as you would know, Mr Speaker, over a period of 12 months. I am more than happy to provide that information, but, as you can see, it is a very small part of the ACT Government's overall budget, but an important part.

Management of Nature Reserves

MS TUCKER: My question is to the Minister for Urban Services and it relates to the announcement yesterday that 100 hectares of woodland would be added to the Territory's nature conservation reserve. Minister, I am sure you will agree that such an area will require management to prevent disturbance by weeds and human activity, so could you advise what resources you are adding to the Parks and Conservation Service to manage this additional responsibility?

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, as detailed in the action plans, it is quite clear what we will do. It is very important that people understand the work of the conservator in coming up with strategies. It fits very neatly with his work as the head of Environment ACT. The resources that are required will be looked at and we will make sure that what we do is done in conjunction with the community. Members might not be aware that the Conservation Council next week, in conjunction with Environment ACT, is having an information night to put out the information on all 24 action plans, but in particular the 11 that I released yesterday, so that people know exactly what will happen now in regard to them.

Mr Moore: Dr Adrian is doing a great job.

MR SMYTH: He is doing an excellent job.

MS TUCKER: I have a supplementary question, Mr Speaker. Minister, is it true that the Parks and Conservation Service has been asked in recent weeks to make cuts to its operational budget this financial year by about a third? Could you explain this? Is there some other way of getting these efficiencies in order to ensure the management?

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