Page 310 - Week 01 - Thursday, 9 December 2004

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we all have friends on both sides, and that is one of the pleasures. There are always people here who amuse us and whom I am sure we amuse. Part of the enjoyment of being in the Assembly is the variety of staff—the backgrounds we have got. Everyone is different, everyone is individual, and I think that is quite fantastic.

To the class of 2004, I hope you have enjoyed your first full week. It is an exciting job we have here; it is a fabulous job. I love every minute of it. I look forward to seeing you next year, particularly Zed and Richard. Thanks very much for complementing the team that I lead. I really value what you have brought this week, and I look forward to you guys—when you have some more experience under your belts—giving even more. To all our families, to the loved ones that look after us and to the friends that buy the beers on a bad day and bring the scotch around on the good nights, I would like to say thank you. Enjoy your break, all of you. It is a wonderful time. I love Christmas. It is actually my turn to host my family’s Christmas. There are only 60 of us coming, so spare a thought for Robyn, who is going to do all the cooking.

Before we go, I have a question to pose to the Minister for Urban Services. In his multicultural festival booklet for next year, he says that there will be cultural entertainment from all of the continents. I just want to know where the penguins are staying.


MR HARGREAVES (Brindabella—Minister for Disability, Housing and Community Services, Minister for Urban Services and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (6.05): I would like to add my sentiments to those of the Leader of the Opposition. But, initially, to answer his question, St Anne’s convent is where I am going to get the penguins from.

Mr Speaker, I rise in the adjournment debate to wish all members and their families all the very best over Christmas and the New Year break. I hope that you all have a joyous time with your families and that we all return safely after the break. I welcome the new members to the chamber. I know what a thrill it is to be placed in our position of trust and to be given the opportunity of representing our community.

I would also like to put on record my appreciation to the staff of the Assembly, chamber support, corporate support, committee office, library, Hansard, technical, IT and building support and, of course, our beloved attendants.

Mr Smyth: And Barry, I forgot Barry.

MR HARGREAVES: You forgot Barry, but he is building support, Leader of the Opposition. Of course we all say “Good on you, Baz!” It has been an absolute pleasure to be amongst you all, and I hope that you too have a wonderful time over the break. I need to wish my staff, Andrew, Maria, Ian and Liz, Ashley and Pat, Melissa and Nicole, and their families, a lovely Christmas and New Year and thank them for their support. It has been a roller-coaster five weeks, and they have been just fantastic.

I would also like to express my appreciation to all officers in the departments of urban services, disability, housing, community services and in JACS, the ESA and the AFP,

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