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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2001 Week 6 Hansard (13 June) . . Page.. 1652 ..

MS TUCKER (continuing):

you, Mrs Burke, the opportunity, and I do not think Mr Rugendyke did either. That is an untrue statement.

My concern is that you cannot put untrue statements like that into a report and then lecture us in this place about working with integrity and the community being disillusioned with politicians. I agree with a lot of what Mrs Burke said about how people conduct themselves on occasions, and we have had that debate quite recently here with the debate around sin-binning. And I said I thought it was more appropriate that people just behave with more decorum; I agree with that.

However, I cannot agree that you can in one statement say that and then produce a dissenting report like this, which is an unfair allegation and not substantiated at all. I have to say that this was a difficult work period in the Assembly year. It is the worst work period in the Assembly year, if you take your work seriously. Estimates is a nightmare. It is a nightmare for me and my office. It is a nightmare for everyone who contributes in any meaningful way. That is the reality.

If we do not like that, we ask the government to give us more time by producing its budget earlier et cetera. We have gone through that debate; we have gone through that debate with the draft budget process as well. There are time constraints and it is very hard work. Do not manipulate the fact that you were not able to do that work by accusing unfairly people in this committee for not wanting to hear what you had to say. That is absolutely not integrious.

MR QUINLAN (4.21), in reply: I could not agree more with Ms Tucker, I think it is quite a serious matter. There has been a fair amount of mock indignation in this place already today, but I think she put it quite well. You cannot put untruths in statements like this-you just cannot do it-but just coincidentally have contributed virtually nothing to the whole process. This is your get-out clause. It is appalling-the effort-and you cannot say that. I, in my defence, will say that I went out of my way to say to people, "If you want to put something in, put it in."

Mrs Burke: You had your own agenda right from the beginning.

MR QUINLAN: I do have an opinion; yes, I have opinions. And that would appear to be one up on you. And let me say that the Chief Minister's calling this document trash from top to bottom I wear as a badge of honour. And I was just hoping against hope he would say it was the worst, as well; I just really wanted to top pile.

Mr Berry: Did he say it was the worst?

MR QUINLAN: No, he did not; we could not get that out of him. That is not fair. Now I am disappointed that I did not rank worst. Anyway, be thankful for small mercies-just trash.

Mr Temporary Deputy Speaker, in another role, you defended your part in this particular process and listed quite a number of issues and projects in the budget which you thought should be included in this report. The question remains open: if you could reel them off as well as you did today, why did you not you reel them off in the committee room? But you did not. So we heard you talk about CIT, technology parks, class sizes and school

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