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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 13 Hansard (25 November) . . Page.. 4591 ..

Mrs Dunne: He is not coming to the point, Mr Speaker. Can I just remind you again, Mr Speaker, about 118 (b).

MR SPEAKER: Come to the point of the question please, Chief Minister.

MR STANHOPE: In relation to the points raised, Mr Speaker, quite genuinely I have not had a discussion with my ministers, nor have I seen the need to in relation to a requirement to tell the truth, to be honest, open, accountable and transparent in everything we do, because this is a given with this government. This is certainly reflected in our performance to date and will continue to be the case.

MR CORNWELL: Mr Speaker, I ask a supplementary question. As you have not had discussions with your ministers-

MR SPEAKER: Will you come to the point of the question? We do not want a preamble.

MR CORNWELL: I am, sir. Am I therefore to understand that your ministers will be dismissed if they are not open, honest and accountable?

MR STANHOPE: My ministers are open, honest and accountable, Mr Speaker. They have been, they are and they will always be so.

Draft water strategy

MRS DUNNE: My question is to the Minister for Environment, Mr Stanhope. Minister, in the draft water strategy "Think water, act water", released in stealth last Friday, you claimed that the flow into Googong Dam is almost 40 per cent above that recorded in the 1999 water resources management plan. In the draft strategy, you attribute the differences between the strategy and the water resources management plan to:

... changes to flow equations used to estimate volumes from stream height measurements, refinements to estimating methods used for catchments that are not measured and an increase in the amount of data available for sub-catchments that have only been monitored for short periods.

Minister, how is a 40 per cent increase in the Googong catchment possible and, if it is an accurate figure, where has all the water gone?

MR STANHOPE: I will respond to the use of "in stealth". I have to say that, because ABC television, WIN television and the Canberra Times covered the event, I think that what Mrs Dunne meant by "in stealth"is that this was another event that the Liberals boycotted and sought not to attend. Basically, this is becoming very much a part and parcel of the way they undertake their duties. They sit in their offices, excluded from the community, not talking, not listening, not taking note and not consulting. To actually suggest that the matter was dealt with in stealth is absolute nonsense. It was reported in the media. Media alerts were issued and it was a very good event held at 10.00 am on Friday morning. It led immediately to a fall of three inches of rain. I thought it was quite significant, of course, to the extent that it achieved such an immediate and beneficial response.

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