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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 6 Hansard (18 June) . . Page.. 2021 ..

Mr Smyth

: I have a point of order, Mr Speaker. The answer clearly lacks relevance to the question. The question was concise. You have directed the minister to answer against question, which is about his own consultation process. He chooses to ignore you and the standing orders, and I ask you to bring him to order.


: He does not ignore me, because I have allowed responses to questions-and always have-that contextualise the subject matter, and I will continue to do that.


: They are very touchy, aren't they, Mr Speaker? $21/2 million for a new library facility in Kippax! That is this government's commitment-something the Liberal Party failed to address in six years. For six years they had the portable shed out there at Kippax, and they decided that was good enough as far as Kippax was concerned. Just get the old portable shed out there. That will do! We do not believe so, and we have moved to address the issue-with $21/2 million for a new, permanent library building.

In relation to the site, the government has put to the community seven options, including the government's preferred option at this time. We have been quite upfront about that. It is an option that provides for effective linking of the two elements of Kippax Fair and addresses casual surveillance, pedestrian access and a range of other issues.

It is interesting that there is an assertion that there is a unanimous view in the West Belconnen community about the location of the new library. The reason for that is that only yesterday-

Mr Stanhope

: It's Harold Hird starting his re-election campaign!


: Maybe that's why they are so touchy. As late as yesterday I was advised that Planning and Land Management have received a significant level of representation from a large number of the traders at Kippax Fair saying they prefer the government's option.

I raise that simply to make the point that there is no unanimous view, as is alleged by Mr Stefaniak, as to where the library should go in Kippax. We will consider all the issues raised by all of the individuals involved in the consultation process. We will weigh those up in a balanced way to ensure that we deliver the best possible site for the library. We are delivering a $21/2 million permanent library, something those opposite failed to do in six years in government.


: I have a supplementary question. Minister, will you be attending the public meeting today to explain to the residents why their views are unimportant?


: No, I won't be attending. The comprehensiveness of this government's consultation program precludes me from being at the tens and tens of meetings we conduct on every single planning issue in the territory.


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