Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 10 Hansard (27 August) . . Page.. 2906 ..
MR STEFANIAK (continuing):
we put in the forward works. I am pleased to see that something is actually going to occur that is absolutely essential.
There are a few things in Belconnen-I am not going to talk about skateboard parks now; I will leave that for later-which we had in our budget and which are not in there. That is a bit of a concern. But at least-and I will come to that later, too-William Hovell Drive is there. I will close at this point and note a couple of other things later.
MS DUNDAS (9.40): In this area of infrastructure spending the government is sadly much like the previous government. Just like the previous government, this government is still endlessly deferring a real commitment to a permanent, purpose-built Kippax library.
At the estimates hearings on 22 July, the Minister for Urban Services said that there was no capital funding for Kippax library in this budget but that there was money to, I quote, "keep the thing on the go". Well, there has been precious little "go" and a lot of "maybe one day".
After witnessing the numerous sod-turnings on Belconnen pool, the Belconnen community of Kippax do not feel optimistic about getting their library within their lifetimes-when the government has not even got past the endless reviews and needs analyses.
Minister Wood said that $100,000 was allocated in last year's budget for a library scoping study and that $30,000 of that had been spent so far. The remaining $70,000 is apparently to be spent on a study looking at the relationship between the Belconnen and Kippax libraries and the library needs of Belconnen residents.
The initial Kippax report is to be completed in September, but the minister could not give a completion date for the study examining the relationship between the Belconnen and Kippax libraries. This is incredibly unsatisfactory for the people of West Belconnen. As the estimates report has noted, we hope that a copy of those two reports will be tabled in the Assembly as soon as they are completed.
In the area of transport, this government has adopted the skewed priorities of the previous government by spending 16 times as much on infrastructure for private vehicles as on infrastructure for all other modes of transport put together. Let me say it again: this is a budget about priorities. The government has announced pay parking for Tuggeranong and Belconnen to get people out of their cars but has failed to commit to redirecting the increased revenue to additional bus services to make public transport more attractive to commuters.
The government has made much of its additional commitments to public transport, and I do welcome their move to the single-zone fare system. But this year we will not see an increase in the number of services provided, so I have trouble believing that patronage levels will rise. And Belconnen interchange is still not getting a much needed facelift to make it a safe and a pleasant place to wait for buses.