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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 5 Hansard (8 May) . . Page.. 1816 ..

MS MacDONALD (continuing):

place but, of course, they did not put it in such a fashion; it was put much more politely than that. You do need a certain amount of stoicism to be able to sit through any enterprise bargaining negotiation, whether it be a heated discussion or, as is usually the case, boring, tedious and long.

I would like to finish by wishing Mark, Beth and their family all the best for the future. I do not feel a need for him to divulge which way he votes. I hope that his retirement from the position as Clerk will mean that he will actually call me by my first name, instead of referring to me as Ms MacDonald. Good luck, Mark.

MRS BURKE: Mark, to have remained for so long in this role you were obviously designed for accomplishment, engineered for success, and endowed with the seeds of greatness, as Zig Zeigler would say. Much has been said about your modern innings. I am not a cricket girl, but I am a rugby union girl, because it is the only game played in heaven. I think Mr Hargreaves would agree with that.

You have been a very calming influence on this place, not the least of which was shown tonight. The look on your face was one I had never seen-maybe there has been a lot of pressure on you today-but even then you were calm under the pressure. Remember, too, that the will of God will never lead you where the grace of God can't keep you.

I wish you and your family every happiness and every success in the next chapter of your life. Actually, Murrumbateman holds a very special place in my life. It is where my family and I started our life when we first came to this fantastic country and we lived out there for a while.

I just want to thank you for your professionalism, thank you for your encouragement of me as a new member twice, thank you for your integrity and, most of all, thank you for the great example that you have set us all in this place, Mark. You have set a high standard for everyone and I appreciate that and I esteem the job that you have done. Thank you, Mark. I, too, thank you most sincerely for your great contribution to this place and to my parliamentary career to date.

MS DUNDAS: Perhaps it is a reflection of my upbringing, but I did not really believe that I had been elected to serve in this place until I received a phone call from the Clerk asking me to come in and work over the details. I do cherish the letter signed by Mark-it sits in the drawer closest to my desk-letting me know exactly when my service in this Assembly would begin.

When I first entered the Assembly in 1993 as the member for Kaleen High School, as part of the Schools Legislative Assembly debates, we were all pretty excited to see the politicians running round at Nara House, but we quickly learnt that it was the clerks who knew what was going on and how to make things happen and we stopped listening to the politicians and started trying to figure out what the clerks were doing. It was an important lesson that I learnt then as part of the schools' parliamentary debates and it is one that I still follow.

Mark has been incredibly helpful in my time as a new member. Lots of words have been used tonight to describe Mark. Yes, he has always provided helpful advice and helpful answers to our questions. I think that one of the best ways he has done that is by

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