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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 1 Hansard (8 December) . . Page.. 4009 ..

Mr Hargreaves: Proposed new section 139K.

MR HUMPHRIES: Indeed. I want to make a few comments about that particular provision and about the legislation generally, Mr Speaker. I think there are not many members in this place who have not raised with me, as Minister for police, in the last year or so a problem coming from some constituent or other to do with burnouts on Canberra streets. It clearly is a significant question which goes to the amenity of Canberra residents and also has some bearing on the question of safety of the ACT's roads. A number of people complain about the loud screeching of tyres on suburban streets, particularly late at night when people are asleep. I am also advised by the police that there is a significant problem with those vehicles causing damage to the roads. I would not have thought it possible, but I am assured by the police that doing burnouts on Canberra streets does have the effect, in some cases at least - - -

Mr Moore: When oil is poured on it.

MR HUMPHRIES: It may be that it only happens when oil is poured onto the road. I am told that burnouts can damage the fabric of the street. I think in those circumstances that legislation that deals with this problem effectively is both timely and important for consideration by the Assembly as a whole. I also want to indicate that, on the basis of the advice I have received from the police, it is important to take the steps which Mr Rugendyke has included in his legislation. These appear to be steps that go a great deal further than might be the case to do with other sorts of problems on Canberra's roads, and in some respects they are.

Mr Speaker, we need to bear in mind the sector of the community that we are dealing with. I think it is important for people to realise that very often people with these sorts of vehicles who conduct these sorts of activities on Canberra's roads do so on an organised basis, do so in concert with a large number of other people very often, and do so in the knowledge, the expectation even, that at some point or other they will be caught by the police and fined, or prosecuted for some offence or another in respect of that activity.

I had one report to me from the police of a person who was picked up during the Summernats festival one year. This person had come to the ACT from elsewhere with a vehicle for display there and freely conceded that he had a budget for the payment of fines. It was quite a large budget of several hundred dollars. This person expected to spend that and in fact looked to taking things to the point where he would be obliged to spend that money in the payment of fines. A challenge to the law appears to be part of the culture that accompanies much of the conduct of these sorts of motor vehicle related events.

If members care to go out to the Barton Highway, just beyond where that large roundabout takes you off at one point to Gungahlin and another point to Belconnen, and before you come to Cockington Green, Gold Creek Village and Federation Square, they will still see, I think, large black marks along the road where people have conducted drag races and burnouts. I am advised by the police that often at night there are large numbers of people at that point on the Barton Highway who take over the road for the

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