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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 1 Hansard (14 February) . . Page.. 126 ..

MR HUMPHRIES (continuing):

The Morgan and Banks job index is an indicator of employer confidence and employers in this territory have confidence. The ANZ job ads show that, the Morgan and Banks figures show that. Members should remember that in the course of the last six years we have created 17,000 jobs in this territory. After creating 17,000 jobs we get those opposite complaining about a 0.1 of 1 per cent increase in the unemployment rate. This is a great and devastating blow. This is what I call looking for the wood and not finding the trees.

We are not going to rest on our laurels. Today we have announced a number of measures to do with the alleviation of poverty in the ACT by way of innovation and early intervention. All of this will contribute to a further growth in jobs in the ACT. I am very proud of that and the extent to which it creates and sustains jobs in this territory will continue to be the hallmark of this government.

MR HIRD: Mr Speaker, I know it is highly disorderly but-

MR SPEAKER: Do not even attempt to do it.

MR HIRD: I would just ask the Chief Minister if he would mind repeating the statement in respect of Morgan and Banks because I would like him to clarify a number of matters.

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Speaker, suffice it to read the headlines from their press release-"ACT job market on the boil!!! The No 1 job state in the nation". If the opposition wants to quibble with that and if they think Morgan and Banks were wrong, they can take it up with them. But I think it is a pretty accurate statement.

Mr Berry: They may be contributors to the Liberal Party.

MR HUMPHRIES: OK, Morgan and Banks are in league with the Liberal Party, obviously. The people on the other side have maligned so many respectable very highly regarded companies across Australia in the last few years that it is not funny. Morgan and Banks are respected for their integrity and their neutrality. It is a great pity that those opposite cannot swallow good news when it comes along.

Disability services inquiry

MS TUCKER: My question is to the Chief Minister and relates to staffing for the inquiry in services for people with disabilities in residential care in the ACT-the Gallop inquiry. Chief Minister, I wrote to you on 10 January of this year expressing some concerns of mine and of members of the community arising out of the initial directions hearing of the inquiry in December of last year and I have not yet received a reply. I seek leave to table the letter, which fully explains the concerns.

Leave granted.

MS TUCKER: I present the following paper:

Disability services inquiry-Appointment of staff and conduct of hearing-Copy of letter from Kerrie Tucker MLA to Gary Humphries, Chief Minister, dated 10 January 2001.

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