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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 9 Hansard (26 August) . . Page.. 3175 ..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

that the cessation is a result of difficulties they have experienced in relation to staff, and I have no reason to disbelieve that. In the context of the future, I remain hopeful that the service will be restored, as promised, by New South Wales.

Mr Speaker, I ask that further questions be placed on the notice paper, Mr Speaker.

Supplementary answers to questions without notice

Street lighting

MR QUINLAN: I did receive a question from Mr Cornwell on 21 August in relation to streetlights in a given street. I have sent a written response to Mr Cornwell's office, but I'll furnish the Assembly with a copy of that to round out the process. I present the following paper:

Outage of overhead lights in Leane Street, Hughes-Answer to question without notice asked of Mr Quinlan by Mr Cornwell and taken on notice on 21 August 2003.

Uriarra settlement

MR WOOD: On 21 August, Mrs Burke asked me about the Uriarra settlement. The detail of the answer is as follows: ActewAGL has advised that the streetlight system at Uriarra has been completely destroyed by the fire. The street lighting is currently not operational, this person said. The entire electrical system, including streetlights, requires major reconstruction and capital works funding. I'm advised that no reconstruction will be carried out until a final decision is made on the future of the settlement. That would then involve new designs from an electrical reticulation system.

Considerable clean-up has taken place at Uriarra as part of the demolitions and repairs. While some small trees remain, they do not pose a fire threat. Arrangements have nonetheless been made to clear them.

On the issue of fire equipment: Transfield was directed to replace the fire equipment destroyed in the bushfire. However, some delays were experienced in transporting the equipment from interstate. The equipment has now been installed.

In relation to strategic fire fighting education: the government has already announced that, before the next fire season commences, every household in the ACT will receive a bushfire awareness package, at a total cost of half a million dollars. This package is intended to have all people in the ACT bushfire prepared and aware and to assist them in making the necessary decisions if fire approaches their property. There is also work under way to ensure that Canberra Connect can assist community members who may seek additional information once they receive their package of information.

In addition, $400,000 will be provided in this year and forward years for the employment of community education and risk management officers. There is also an education and awareness element in the trial of the community fire units which are in the process of being established for eight locations in this financial year.

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