Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2004 Week 01 Hansard (Tuesday, 7 December 2004) . . Page.. 122 ..
or 6.30, for the most part. If members wish to attend functions, especially in the evening, they have to be crucial. If more than one member wants to go, we will not provide two pairs.
The opposition will not provide pairs unless we are given a satisfactory explanation. From time to time there are important reasons why the explanation needs to be kept confidential, but the opposition will not provide pairs if at least the whip is not acquainted with the reason for the pair. Sometimes it is important to keep that confidentiality, and we will maintain that confidentiality, but I would like to put on the record that we will, for the most part, observe the niceties of pairs and will not go down the path of the Labor opposition in Queensland in the late 1990s.
I would like also to commend those people who won awards at the Australian engineering excellence awards at Parliament House on 24 November. The ingenuity was to be commended.
MR STEFANIAK (Ginninderra) (6.06): I mention three matters. Firstly, I, too, would like to place on record my appreciation to the voters of Ginninderra for returning me. I am particularly honoured to get a significantly increased vote, which is particularly pleasing given the nature of the recent election we had. I certainly pledge myself to continue to do my best to represent the interests of my constituency, regardless of how they voted or anything like that, in my role of local member.
One person I always admired greatly was the late Jim Fraser, who lived around the corner from us. Whilst we were of differing political persuasions, he, I always thought, was a consummate local member, as I indeed found former Senator Margaret Reid to be, too, observing her over the years. I think it is always important to do that for your electors, regardless of how they may have voted or whatever. I think that is a crucial part of our role here as members. So I place on record my thanks to the voters of Ginninderra and also, of course, other people, my family and all the other people who helped in my campaign in various ways. Without them, of course, it makes it impossible to get in, given the nature of our system.
On another point: might I congratulate Sailability. A number of members of this Assembly went to the Three Monkeys Race, which has been a regular event now for four years. But Sailability has been going for at least seven years, and it is good to see a very bipartisan approach emerging in this Assembly. I had the honour of being sports minister and getting them, I think, their initial number of boats, with a grant. I was pleased to see the current sports minister featuring in a newsletter they had about a very impressive trailer that is part of an ongoing program to assist.
Sailability was founded largely by the efforts of a number of dedicated individuals, led by Terry Peek who has done a magnificent job not only in Canberra but also throughout Australia. It enables people with various disabilities to sail in these modified, converted dinghies.