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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 4 Hansard (28 March) . . Page.. 1048 ..

MS TUCKER: No, I will conclude at this point. I think that if they have nothing to be concerned about then they should not be afraid of the last part of my motion. I urge members to support my motion.

MR SMYTH (Minister for Urban Services, Minister for Business, Tourism and the Arts and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (4.16): Ms Tucker's censure motion rests upon her belief that information is being withheld from the Assembly. She perceives a conflict of interest in the negotiation of a lease for office space at Brindabella Business Park and she has concerns about access for clients and staff of the Canberra Tourism and Events Corporation. She also seeks reassurance with regards to planning and recommends a performance audit of the corporation's decision to relocate to Brindabella Business Park.

Mr Deputy Speaker, let me summarise CTEC's relocation process. The corporation's current lease was due to expire on 3 April, and has been extended until 15 May 2001. In May last year CTEC called for tenders from firms that could undertake an accommodation needs analysis. As a result, Bligh Voller Nield was appointed to perform the task and in September 2000 a final report was submitted addressing CTEC's accommodation needs.

An independent accommodation consultant retained by CTEC then advertised for expressions of interest to provide accommodation options. Twenty-two properties submitted expressions of interest. Four were assessed as meeting some or all of CTEC's requirements and were short-listed for consideration. Staff and constituent surveys were carried out and factored into the decision-making process.

Each of the four short-listed properties produced a submission, and these were evaluated by the independent accommodation consultant. Of these, one subsequently withdrew its submission, resulting in a final evaluation being made of the three offers. Two of these could not satisfy CTEC's requirements, including areas related to staff parking and security. Based on the consultant's recommendation, and having regard to CTEC's financial and operational requirements, the corporation's board concluded that the best option for the organisation and its staff was the Brindabella Business Park.

CTEC is currently negotiating a lease with Canberra International Airport Pty Ltd. This company is held exclusively by the Snow family interests. Neither Jim Service nor Mr James Service is on its board. They have clearly stated that they hold no interests in this company.

Mr Deputy Speaker, I would like to address Ms Tucker's motion as put to the Assembly. Firstly, we have the alleged failure to supply documents. On 28 February the Assembly asked me to produce information relating to the negotiation of this lease. I did so. Documents were made available but excluded items which were commercial-in-confidence-that is, the names of short-listed candidates and the financial details of their offer, particularly the dollar rate per square metre.

In addition, I offered detailed briefings by CTEC's chief executive. Two members of the Assembly have sought such a briefing. CTEC's chief executive in the briefings was able to say what type of information was commercial-in-confidence and explained why it

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