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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 9 Hansard (21 August) . . Page.. 2786 ..

Mr Stanhope: The answer to the member's question is as follows:

1. Neither the Government nor the Assembly sends an observer to the meetings of H Division of the Australian Local Government Shires Association held in Queanbeyan NSW.

2. Not Applicable.

3. This is a NSW Local Government Association and Member Councils include: Bega Valley, Bombala, Boorowa, Cooma-Monaro, Crookwell, Eurobodalla, Gunning, Harden, Mulwaree, Snowy River, Tallanganda, Yarrowlumla, Yass and Young Shire Councils. Goulburn and Queanbeyan City Councils are Associate Members.

Despite Legislative Assembly representation at H Division meetings in the past, the ACT is now not represented on the Local Government Shires Association. We consider having regular communication with the NSW Premier's Department and the NSW Department of State and Regional Development and hosting the Regional Leaders' Forum provides appropriate links between the ACT and region.

4. The ACT Government continues to strengthen regional ties through both the Regional Leaders' Forum (RLF) and supporting the Australian Capital Region Development Council (ACRDC). Attendance at H Division would duplicate rather than add to these regional ties.

5. I have and will continue to host meetings of the RLF three times a year. The RLF facilitates productive linkages between the Australian Capital Region and the NSW and Commonwealth Governments. Significant contributions continue to be made to the economic, business, environmental, social and cultural development of the Australian Capital Region.


Aboriginal tent embassy

(Question No 249)

Mr Cornwell asked the Minister for Community Affairs, upon notice, on 21 August 2002:

In relation to the Aboriginal tent "embassy" opposite Old Parliament House:

(1) How many children are living at the site;

(2) (a) Who is responsible for child welfare at the site; (b) where do these children attend school and who oversees or checks that these children actually do attend school; (c) what level of truancy or accepted non attendance at school exists among children living at the site;

(3) What efforts are made and what processes are in place to ensure the environment is safe, secure and otherwise suitable for children;

(4) (a) Has there been evidence of drug use/abuse at the site and (b) who is responsible for dealing with this issue;

(5) If the answer to 4(a) is affirmative, what action has been taken to deal with this problem;

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