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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 5 Hansard (1 May) . . Page.. 1296 ..

MR SPEAKER: Indeed. I would remind all members and ministers that we have only half an hour.

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, the curious thing is that Floriade has continued to grow each year. I forget what the figures were for last year but I think it grew 13 per cent over the previous year. The number of local visitors grew 10 per cent. We know this because we count the number of people coming through a gateway. In order to have a gateway we have to have a fence. Clearly, one of the important functions of having a fence is that you can monitor how successful the function is and whether it is really growing. That is the first reason why you would keep the fence.

Secondly, even before the fence went up-

Mr Berry: Was there a contract let?

MR SPEAKER: Order! I have no doubt the minister is aware of the question.

Mr Berry: Was there a contract let and when?

MR SPEAKER: Sit down.

MR SMYTH: The second point, of course, is that even before the fee to enter Floriade was applied and the fence was first erected we were starting to have acts of vandalism.

Floriade is a very important site and a very important function for the territory. Under us the event has grown. We have made it better in respect of scale and size. Also, ancillary things like coffee shops, restaurants and sellers of different sorts of products that are housed in tents need security, and the intention is to keep the fence because it offers a sense of security. There is also a need for security during the setting up and taking down of the event. It is a construction site and normally around a construction site we would have some sort of protection for people working on the site and people going past and so on. I will have to find out the details of the contract for Mr Berry.

Court order to return child to family

MR RUGENDYKE: My question is to the Attorney-General, Mr Stefaniak. Minister, today the Canberra Times reported from the ACT Supreme Court that a three-year-old girl was assaulted within four days of being ordered to be returned to her family. What reasons were given, if you are aware of them, by the justice for returning the child under this order?

MR STEFANIAK: I thank the member for the question. Yes, I recall the report today and I think I may have some recollection of when the case was decided. But I would need to get back to Mr Rugendyke to do full justice to an answer to that part of his question. I will make some inquiries and get back to you in relation to that. It is certainly a disturbing report but I will need to refresh my memory as to exactly what in fact the situation was when the initial order was made.

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