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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 11 Hansard (25 September) . . Page.. 3241 ..

MR CORBELL (continuing):

are you going to do about these issues?" Well that is why we are releasing our response at the same time as we release the report-so that you know what the government is going to do about these issues, and so that you can make your judgments about whether or not you believe that is appropriate.

But less than three weeks from receipt to release is not the sign of a government seeking to hide something. It is the sign of a government prepared to act in good faith, and to release the report as soon as possible. I indicated in my earlier speech that the government would be opposing this motion. The government is prepared to support this motion provided that it is amended in accordance with Ms Tucker's amendment, and we will be voting for that amendment.

Finally, Ms Dundas said she would like to see this sort of assessment done on the entire route of the road. Well it has been, Ms Dundas, and it is on the web. The noise studies, the environmental impact studies, the engineering studies are all publicly available now. The impacts on residences along the route are on the website now. The government has put all of the information up. All of the information is available, including all of the consultants' reports. I have to say, where residents have questioned the accuracy of the consultants' reports, the government has facilitated meetings between those residents and the appropriate consultants, in particular the noise consultant, so that they can put their questions directly to the consultant on the issues that have been raised.

This is a government that is prepared to engage in this debate, and it is prepared to facilitate the maximum amount of information possible in the debate. It continues to be our approach. We seek to have a collaborative approach on what is a very difficult issue, but an issue which we believe is important in addressing the transport infrastructure needs of the city, and of Gungahlin residents in particular.

MR STEFANIAK (4.38): I will speak to both the motion and the amendment, although my colleague Mrs Dunne will be making some comments about the amendment, so I think I will leave that to her. I note that the minister is saying yes, he accepts the amendment; he wants to release the information he has had now for three weeks-

Mr Stanhope: He's had it a week.

MR STEFANIAK: You've had it a week, have you? Right. But you are going to release it with a government response. Really, I cannot see any reason why it cannot be released now and you can do your response later, minister. Surely that is consistent with the open government you purport to be.

What I have actually seen of the report indicates-and I think a Canberra Times article of a couple of days ago also indicated this-that this report seems to very much support the eastern route. I just wonder how much longer we are going to have to put up with this minister's pig-headedness in terms of the western route.

I think it should become painfully obvious now to this government that the eastern route is the best route. My colleague Mr Pratt has given a very good expose, I think, of the effect the western route has on the AIS-facts that were known to everyone in this place as early as last year when the committee looking at it heard from the AIS. But that seems to be ignored in terms of what the preferred route should be.

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