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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 10 Hansard (28 August) . . Page.. 2957 ..

MR QUINLAN: I do not know the rule for asking the former government questions at question time. That is probably an innovation that we could introduce. All I can say is that it was a problem that needed urgent attention. It was a problem that should have been attended to. It was a problem that should have been funded in the previous budget and it was not.

MS DUNDAS: I have a supplementary question. Treasurer, can you inform us what steps you will be taking in the future to ensure that expenditure under your term as Treasurer through the Treasurer's Advance is actually unforeseen?

MR QUINLAN: How all-seeing can we possibly be? The only answer to that question is that we will be doing our best. It is only a case of requiring all of our caucus and our cabinet to do their very best and, of course, the departments and the support structures that we have to do their very best to ensure that all service needs have been identified leading up to a budget process. I am sure that there will be events that will overtake us and that, regardless of how much deliberative work has been done before the event, the unforeseen will occur. All we can do is do our best in terms of analysing service needs and unmet service need leading up to the budget and at least make decisions on whether we can fit all of those things within the spending capacity of government. That is part of the budget process. As I said, the only answer to that is that we will be doing our best.

Canberra spatial plan

MS MacDONALD: My question is to the Minister for Planning, Mr Corbell. Can the minister update the Assembly on the government's next steps in developing that important land use and development strategy, the Canberra spatial plan?

MR CORBELL: I thank Ms MacDonald for the timely question on this subject, given the debate earlier in the Assembly today and the acknowledgment from the opposition of the importance of the strategic planning process that this government is undertaking.

Mrs Dunne: I take a point of order, Mr Speaker. The minister has acknowledged that the question relates to a debate that is currently adjourned to a later hour this day. I am just wondering whether discussion on the spatial plan anticipates debate on my order of the day No 4.

MR SPEAKER: I am sure that the minister will take that as a warning.

MR CORBELL: Mr Speaker, it certainly does not pre-empt debate. It is about an already announced government program and I am advising members of the detail of its implementation. Mr Speaker, the Canberra spatial plan is an important element of the Canberra plan, the government's strategy for the city, which has economic, social and spatial land use components.

Mr Speaker, it will be formulated through a community-based process which will be undertaken over this year and into next year. This plan is really the first serious attempt by any government to establish a strategic plan for the future of the city, to manage the growth and development of the city, since the NCDC released its metropolitan plan in the early 1980s. It was interesting, Mr Speaker, to hear reports of the comments of the

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