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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 12 Hansard (20 November) . . Page.. 4417 ..

MRS BURKE: Mr Speaker, I ask a supplementary question. Minister, thank you for the response. What are you going to do, now that you know the problem exists, to ensure that these aged persons have this serious problem eased as a matter of urgency?

MR WOOD: You said, "Now that I know the problem exists."Thanks to quite a few people, I have known for quite a while that the problem exists.

Mr Stefaniak: The bill of rights will make it impossible to do anything.

Mrs Dunne: What about the rest of the community?

MR SPEAKER: Order! Members will cease interjecting.

MR WOOD: I heard an interjection that raises a very fair question.

MR SPEAKER: Don't take any notice of that either. Just go on with answering the question.

Mrs Burke: I would like to hear your answer, Minister.

MR WOOD: It is a fair question. Actually, I answered your question in the first part of my answer. There is a continuing process going on and, to the extent it is necessary, that will continue.

Weed control

MR CORNWELL: My question is to the minister for the environment, Mr Stanhope. Environment ACT has a management agreement with Horse Farms ACT to manage horse agistment paddocks. The contract with Horse Farms ACT contains a land management agreement, including weed control. On 8 November, about 25 horse owners were forced to clean up the paddocks at Hume because they were overrun by Paterson's curse. Terry Weston, who participated in the cleanup, said, "The condition of this yard and most of the paddocks around here is a complete and utter disgrace".

Yet yesterday in response to a question you said:

The government has done what it might in relation to Paterson's curse, particularly in those horse paddocks which we control.

Minister, why have you failed to enforce the land management agreement with Horse Farms ACT and providing for effective weed control?

MR STANHOPE: I thank the member for the question, following on as it does from Mrs Dunne's question yesterday about Paterson's curse. I have to confess that I am not aware of the nature of the contractual arrangements between Environment ACT and Horse Farms ACT in relation to the property that they manage. I am more than happy to have a look at that and to provide the Assembly with details of the management arrangements that are in place in relation to that particular contract.

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