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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 13 Hansard (21 November) . . Page.. 3925 ..

MR WOOD (continuing):

It is interesting to note-and I stress this-that in the very thorough routine surveys carried out by the Department of Urban Services the community has expressed an extremely high level of satisfaction with both the garbage collection and the recycling collection. So the evidence is there that the workers, along with the company, are performing very well indeed. That seems to me a good reason for things to continue.

I can understand the concern of the workers. It has taken a while for this to happen. In fact, the history goes back to the days of the former government. The contract expired at 30 November 2001, just after we came into power. But some six months before that, the former government extended the contract for whatever reason, knowing that they could not start then and perhaps have it all completed by the end of November.

A contract with Cleanaway was signed a little while ago, and there are various steps to go through to complete the deal. The union is concerned, it seems to me, that it has taken too long. I can understand the workers' concern, because this has been on the agenda for such a long time. If your job is on the line, you are going to be concerned. But given the record of the workers over seven years, I think it is pretty obvious what should happen.

Further meetings between the union and the successful contractor are scheduled, and I hope they can work through the issues.

Mr Stanhope: I ask that further questions be placed on the notice paper, Mr Speaker.

Hospital waiting lists

MR STANHOPE: I have further information in relation to a question asked of me today by Mr Pratt. Mr Pratt asked whether or not I had misled the Assembly in an answer I gave on Tuesday.

Mr Humphries: He had to withdraw that.

MR STANHOPE: Yes, he did. I am responding that I did not mislead the Assembly in my answer. In fact, Mr Pratt, in his question, misled the Assembly by very clinically editing what I did say. It shows an appalling lack of integrity on Mr Pratt's part in editing a sentence from Hansard.

He asked whether I said in contradiction of the waiting lists that the waiting lists had decreased. In fact, I did say that they had. I added-and this is what Mr Pratt edited out:

The latest numbers we have are for September.

What I said is quite explicit. I was talking about September, and the numbers did decrease in September. For Mr Pratt to seek to verbal me in a question by editing a sentence from Hansard is just a bit beyond the pale. I said:

The latest numbers we have are for September.

That was left out of the question I was asked, as a result of which there was a misleading of the Assembly by Mr Pratt.

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