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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 12 Hansard (14 November) . . Page.. 3644 ..

MR SPEAKER (continuing):

I'll just take two of the points-

statements, activities, actions or decisions of the Minister's own party or of its conferences or officials, or of those of other parties, including opposition parties;

statements by people outside the House including other Members, notably opposition Members;

I cannot see that Mr Wood is responsible for what Mr Hargreaves said in August last year, and therefore I am going to rule the question out of order.

MR CORNWELL: Mr Speaker, but he is responsible for the matter of third party insurance as Minister for Urban Services.

MR SPEAKER: If you want to rephrase the question, Mr Cornwell, and come back to it in a little while, I am happy for you to do that. The point I am making is that I am not going to allow questions that relate to what somebody else in this parliament said some time ago when these people were not in government.

If you want to ask a question of the relevant minister about existing policy of the government on a particular matter, feel free to do so, because that is what question time is about. If you want to come back to it a little later, on I am happy for you to do so.

Drought assistance

MRS DUNNE: My question is addressed to the Minister for Urban Services and it relates to something he said yesterday-and this was quoted on ABC Online. You were reported as saying that you would provide modest resources to local farmers struggling through the drought. The ABC report went on to say:

Mr Wood says the ACT government will focus its resources locally, but concedes assistance would be modest.

Then it quotes Mr Wood as saying:

Rural lease holders in the ACT are not perceived to be in the same position as farmers in other parts of the country, because here they generally always have additional income to revenues generated from their farm activity.

At the same time, your federal colleague Jenny Macklin considers that farmers should receive urgent assistance and that governments should "stop mucking around". She said:

Let's make sure that farmers get the money that they justly need.

Minister, when will you stop mucking around and make sure that farmers in the ACT get the assistance that they really need?

Mr Corbell: Did Brendan Smyth give them assistance when there was last a drought?

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