Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 9 Hansard (21 August) . . Page.. 2784 ..
(2) Why does Totalcare Industries Limited advertise in the Service Directory section of The Chronicle (Tues 30 July 2002) offering "competitive rates, prompt reliable and friendly service, no jobs too small or large" etc, for work including "blocked drains, hot water units, leaking taps, bathroom renovations" etc in direct competition with small and large private enterprise plumbing companies and individual plumbers.
(3) Why does ActewAGL Home Services advertise in the Service Directory section of The Chronicle (Tubs 13 August 2002) asking "Gas appliance not working?" and offering "fast, reliable" service and repair of all gas appliances in direct competition with private enterprise gasfitters.
(4) Are the "licensed tradesmen and women" who provide the services advertised by Totalcare and ActewAGL in The Chronicle employed as public servants, or are they contracted under outsourcing arrangements or some other system.
(5) Is the ACT Government committed to encouraging and maintaining a healthy private sector in the ACT.
(6) If so, how can this be achieved if the Government's own Corporations compete for jobs from the private sector.
Mr Quinlan: The answer to the member's question is as follows:
(1) Territory Owned Corporations compete in the market place for the line of business for which the Corporation has been established. Territory Owned Corporations are set up to be commercial entities fully competing in their relevant markets. Specifically, the Territory Owned Corporations Act 1990 provides for the following objective for corporations (section 7 refers):
"The principal objective of a Territory owned corporation is to carry on
business successfully and, to this end -
(a) to operate at least as efficiently as any comparable business; and
(b) to maximise the sustainable return to the Territory on its investment in the corporation in accordance with the performance targets contained in the latest statement of corporate intent of the corporation."
(2) The Facilities Management Business Unit of Totalcare is in the business of providing building services to a range of clients within the ACT. The pricing arrangements for this work are based on competitive neutral principles to ensure that Totalcare does not obtain an unfair advantage.
Totalcare actually ceased advertising several months ago, but The Chronicle continued to run the advertisement. The intent behind the original decision to advertise was to lift productivity, maintain skills of trades people and enhance the cost effective delivery of the 24 hour service to existing clients.
(3) The provision of gas maintenance services is a core business for ActewAGL and the performance of these services is consistent with the original intent when actual was formed. The pricing arrangements for this work are based on competitive neutral principles to ensure that ActewAGL does not obtain an unfair advantage.