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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 3 Hansard (12 March) . . Page.. 951 ..

MS DUNDAS (continuing):

To date we do not have a confirmed site. There appears to be a deliberate strategy to delay the construction of community facilities and a permanent library in Kippax. My fear, and the fear of residents in the area, is that this $270,000-FROM the only official documentation available that there is a future for Kippax-will just disappear and the government will blame issues which have arisen since last year's budget, such as the bushfires and the superannuation situation, and reallocate the money.

In May last year, I tabled a petition from over 900 residents, calling for the immediate construction of the library. The need for this facility has been raised by the community for many years. While a master planning process is long overdue for this area, this should not be seen as yet another excuse to delay the construction of this important community facility.

Residents are sick of excuses and obstructions. We need some firm, hard, decisions that will allow the people of West Belconnen access to the community facilities they so desperately need. Many residents thought that, with the Chief Minister coming from Ginninderra, they would see Belconnen looked after. We have seen-and I was quite happy to welcome-the discussion paper released yesterday on upgrades for the Belconnen bus interchange. I hope that process advances and that the community has full input into that, as called for by the paper.

However, my understanding is that that is part of a program that has seen the upgrading of interchanges across the city. While there have been master planning processes conducted in almost every other centre the size of Kippax, we have not seen any master planning processes in Kippax. Whilst we have seen $500,000 for the Civic Library in the last budget, we have not seen anything beyond the $270,000 for design planning for the Kippax library. In the last budget, we saw the withdrawal of funding for the proposed Charnwood skate park and a further delay on the much-needed Belconnen Health Centre.

I am concerned about what is happening to the people of Belconnen, and specifically the people of West Belconnen, who are at a loss to understand why their town centre has been allowed to run down to its present state. The private sports facility that was sitting there has now been closed for over a year. It has caught on fire a number of times. It just sits there with a big fence around it-and there is no progression.

Were the master planning process underway, the community members would be able to feed-in their vision for their town centre. They would be able to put their ideas on the table as to how they want their town centre to look, and how they would be able to use the facilities that could be there.

We have a health centre in Kippax that only a few people know about because it is difficult to access. The front door is hidden from the public frontage. I cannot see how this could be an ideal situation in anybody's mind. That is why I have brought this motion forward.

We have had discussions in this place before, and through the media, about the Kippax library and the Kippax master planning process. I would urge this Assembly to support this motion. Then the people of West Belconnen will be able to see a time line that will progress the much-needed community facilities, the community library and the master

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