Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 5 Hansard (8 May) . . Page.. 1708 ..
MR STEFANIAK (continuing):
recommendation 42: reviewing the anti-bullying program and seeing if improvements can be made there. The way the committee has framed that is sensible.
There are some very good things in this report, and I thank the committee for its efforts in that regard. There are also some very dangerous recommendations, recommendations the government needs to look at very closely and be very wary of. There are far better ways of achieving what the committee wants to achieve, and what we all want to achieve, than what it is recommending.
Debate (on motion by Mr Cornwell ) adjourned to the next sitting.
Sitting suspended from 12.34 pm to 2.30 pm.
MR SPEAKER: I acknowledge the presence in the gallery of members of the University of the Third Age who are doing a program with us. Welcome.
Questions without notice
MR SMYTH: My question is to the Treasurer. A comparison between the budget for 2002-03 and the estimated outcome for 2002-03 shows that budget expenditure has blown out by $233 million. Even removing the net impact of the bushfires only reduces the expenditure blowout to $206 million, which is still alarming. To put this in context, this is roughly as much expenditure as the Department of Disability, Housing and Community Services and ACT Housing put together. Why have you failed so abysmally to keep your spending under control?
MR QUINLAN: It is all necessary expenditure for good government, for the reasons we are here. I have a summary of the major variances for the year. They include clerical wage increases of about $11 million; losses on superannuation investments of $56 million, because they are in the net figures; the waiver of expenses of $25 million; the insurance payment to the VTE sector of $82 million; some extraordinary expenses-I will give details if you need them-of $45 million; and a superannuation actuarial assessment of $7 million.
In large part, these amounts are not about spending blowouts. They are about circumstances of the budget. They are also about accounting within the budget. They are in the main not about huge blowouts in actual expenditure in administration.
MR SMYTH: I ask a supplementary question. Treasurer, would you mind tabling that list? Yes, I would like to know what the extraordinary figures were as well, please.
MR QUINLAN: We will give you a list of the extraordinary expenses. The list is only a working note, so I will not be tabling it.