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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 5 Hansard (2 May) . . Page.. 1344 ..

MRS BURKE (continuing):

achieved by blood, sweat and tears. Can the Treasurer advise the Assembly of the reaction to the ACT budget of the business community and economic commentators?

MR HUMPHRIES: I thank Mrs Burke for that question. Yes, I can give some advice about that. Mr Peters, from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry-

Mr Hargreaves: Ticket holder No 1.

Mr Berry: I wonder what he said.

Mr Stanhope: What did he say?

MR SPEAKER: Order! I want to hear what he said, thank you.

Mr Stanhope: He said it last year and the year before, and the year before that.

MR SPEAKER: Repetition is not unusual in this place either, Mr Stanhope.

MR HUMPHRIES: Mr Peters has hailed the budget. He says it strikes the balance. It provides the support and services so business can contribute to the ACT's economy, and it still has the resources to contribute to social welfare. Obviously those opposite do not like Mr Peters, so I will quote some other people.

Mr Stanhope: No, no.

Mr Hargreaves: He is a lovely bloke.

MR SPEAKER: Do not provoke.

MR HUMPHRIES: Well, he took you to dinner last night, didn't he. I suppose you would have to say that, wouldn't you. Mr David Dawes from the MBA welcomed the investment in capital works. "There is no doubting the confidence that these budget measures will instil," he said. Mr Michael Capezio from the Australian Hotels Association was particularly pleased with the tourism measures in the budget, and I quote him: "$1 million for a festivals development fund in Canberra and an additional $1.123 million to the Canberra Tourism and Events Corporation for destination marketing activities, and more money for arts organisations to develop new and innovative projects will ensure Canberra continues to increase tourist numbers."

Mr Phil Newton from the NRMA was also happy about the registration costs for cars falling, of course. "We are happy to congratulate the government on the actions that they are taking." I cannot help but quote the Canberra Times editorial:

In all ... Mr Humphries has done a fairly good job ....

It also says:

Secondly, the additional spending ... has not been done in an economically irresponsible way. The Budget remains in surplus. The ACT retains its triple-A credit rating.

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