Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 13 Hansard (7 December) . . Page.. 3840 ..
MR SMYTH (continuing):
managed in Canberra. SkyFire has been managed very well in Canberra for many years, and we will continue to do so.
MR HARGREAVES: Mr Speaker, I wish to ask a supplementary question because the Minister did not answer a simple question about whether the Government has done a risk assessment. My question is: If you have not done an assessment, why have you not done one? If you have done an assessment, when was it done, what technical qualifications did the assessor have and will you table a copy of that assessment by the close of business today?
MR SMYTH: Mr Hargreaves put out a press release yesterday saying that I should not resort to things like name calling. It is curious that scrooge over there has been against this right from the start. We are yet to hear a positive word from the Labor Party about this event. This is the man who hates Christmas. These are the people who gripe, whinge, bellyache, carp and carry on about everything that this Government does and they are willing for their own political ends to put at risk everything that we do to try to build up the Canberra economy.
Mr Quinlan: With justification.
MR SPEAKER: Order! Settle down over there.
MR SMYTH: Every time we put on an event that benefits the people of Canberra - - -
Mr Hargreaves: You would have said exactly the same thing about the Canberra Hospital implosion.
MR SPEAKER: Order! I know that we are all looking forward to holidays, children, but let us just behave ourselves for a few more days.
MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, we have looked at the risks involved in this function. We have a forum that draws together everything from the police to the NCA. Emergency Services have been involved. We have looked at the things that might go wrong because that is what one does when one plans such an event. We have a forum that is meeting regularly to make sure that it goes on. What we do not have here is support from the Labor Party to do a great thing for the people of Canberra. We have the support of the people of Canberra. They all think that it is great that we are providing them with the opportunity as a community to go there to celebrate New Year's Eve. Why wouldn't you?
Their Labor colleagues in New South Wales do not. A recent survey published in last Sunday's Sun-Herald said that 43 per cent of Sydneysiders will be staying away from the events in Sydney because they are badly organised. Previous articles actually gave us a write-up, saying that perhaps the best organised event in the country will be held in Canberra. But what do we get from those opposite? We get complaints, we get grumbles, we get moans and we get groans. That is all we have had for the last two years.