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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 1 Hansard (20 February) . . Page.. 310 ..

MR QUINLAN: The appeal figure is published in the Canberra Times. The appeal has received in excess of $41/2 million. The figure published is usually for money in the bank. There are a few pledges floating in the ether, and there are more events to occur. We expect the figure to be in excess of $5 million in another couple of weeks. The foundation has set an ambitious target of $10 million. I hope they make it.

The support has been tremendous. I wanted to mention someone who gave tremendous assistance, but the person has forbidden me from doing it. It is nice to have in your network people who have connections. The process went something like this: "I can get you the Daily Telegraph."If people have seen the Daily Telegraph, they will have seen the full front page of one edition, with the headline "Time to help", and about the first three pages devoted to the appeal. Because that happened, the other dailies came in. It had a domino effect, not only with publicity and free advertising but also with donations. The Commonwealth Bank came in, and all of a sudden we had virtually all of the banks contributing. To my anonymous friend, I say, "Thanks for the use of your network."I have learned how some of these things can snowball.

If you have the time and a few loose dollars, please attend as many of the fundraisers as you can. So far they have been run in great spirit and have been very enjoyable occasions.

Gungahlin town centre

MRS CROSS: My question is to Mr Corbell in his capacity as the Minister for Planning. Can the minister confirm whether the Gungahlin Development Authority held a board meeting this morning and can the minister confirm the sale of lots 13, 14 and 15? If the land has indeed been sold, does the minister concede that this contravenes the motion agreed to in this place last night that there should be more collaborative and inclusive planning which should embrace community consultation?

MR CORBELL: I thank Mrs Cross for the question. I can confirm that the Gungahlin Development Authority did have its regular meeting this morning. I am not aware of what was specifically discussed at that meeting so I cannot advise Mrs Cross of the detail of any discussions in relation to the potential sale by tender of a number blocks of land, in particular sections 14 and 15, in Gungahlin. I can confirm, though, that the government will be pushing ahead with the release of these sites.

We believe it is absolutely essential that residents in Gungahlin get more shops, more services and more jobs in the Gungahlin town centre than there are now. We will not be letting the proposal that has been put forward by Mrs Cross and others delay the provision of very important services to residents of Gungahlin. We anticipate that a final decision and announcement in relation to the tender will be made some time in the next two to three weeks.

MRS CROSS: Mr Speaker, I have a supplementary question. Minister, what importance do you place on this Assembly as a democratic institution? Can you please explain whether your comment last night after Mrs Dunne's motion on the Gungahlin town square pedestrian precinct was passed that you would simply ignore this motion if it was passed is in fact reflecting a contempt you hold towards the democratic processes of this place.

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