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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 12 Hansard (14 November) . . Page.. 3669 ..

MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

compromise that perspective if all of the members bring that view to their deliberations on the committees.

I am going to address both of these, in the interests of time. I do not see why one needs to discharge Mrs Cross from the standing committee of which I am chair because she is no longer a member of the Liberal Party. In fact, notwithstanding her nomination by the Liberal Party to the position she holds as a member of that committee, she was appointed to it as a member of this Assembly. I believe to then say, "You have to get off it because you aren't a member of a political party,"politicises the committee system. It was exactly that that I was trying to avoid in the first place. If that is the reason, I cannot support it. In reality, I have to say, as chair of that committee, that we have inquiries which, on reasonable examination, run together-some of them as a consequence of others.

Without going into detail, I foreshadow that the next inquiry we pick up will come out of some of the information we have gleaned in a current inquiry. It will not be a case of just going to the end of the current inquiries and saying, "Thanks for coming-good on you."I think we are going to need input from as many people who wish to contribute to it, all the way through to the end of this Assembly. It is my belief that, if people wish to serve on the committees, we should allow that, provided-this is the only stipulation I have-they understand that they are on these committees as members of this Assembly.

There have often been times when I have been tempted to introduce a Labor Party bias and have resisted that. I have totally resisted it because I do not believe that is my position. I contribute to my standing committee work-as I did in both the previous Assembly and in this one-on the basis of my being a member of this place.

So, Mr Speaker, this side of the house will not support the motion from Mr Stefaniak. However, we would welcome Mr Cornwell onto the committee. He would be a welcome addition to the committee. I am sure we will benefit from his experience, and his commitment to our work.

In relation to the next motion, any proposed amendment which alters the wording of this motion, in my view, merely seeks to politicise it. We on this side of the house will not support it.

Question put:

That Mr Stefaniak's motion be agreed to.

A vote having been called for and the bells being rung-

Mr Smyth: On a point of order, Mr Speaker, before the vote is called.

MR SPEAKER: Sorry-no. There is a count on at this moment.

Mr Smyth: It is with regard to the count, because the count may well breach the standing orders.

MR SPEAKER: Well, okay.

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