Page 316 - Week 01 - Thursday, 9 December 2004
MR MULCAHY (Molonglo) (6.25): I will be brief. I would like to formally convey my good wishes to you, Mr Speaker, the members and officers of the Assembly and, indeed, all the other staff of the Assembly, as well as the parliamentary staff that serve all of us so well.
I would like to place on record my special thanks to the Clerk and his team. As a new member, the assistance and guidance you receive in the early stages is not insignificant. I have nothing but praise for the help that has been provided by that office in assisting me to understand my requirements, compliances and procedure.
I do not see the need to go through all the issues I raised in my inaugural speech, but I reiterate my thanks to my family for their support. They make major sacrifices in all cases. Their support was so pivotal in securing election to the Legislative Assembly.
I thank the people of Molonglo, who have been generous in their support in attracting the highest vote of any of the Liberal team. I am very determined to ensure that they are pleased with the performance that I deliver on their behalf over the session of this parliament.
I am looking forward to the new year with the various extensive shadow responsibilities that have been allocated to me. I am pleased that, as from today, with my being elected chairman of the public accounts committee, we will have the opportunity to work closely in reviewing the workings of government and administration.
Whilst I know the custom in these addresses is not to delve too much into policy matters—and I will not—I would like to say that I was pleased to hear the Minister for Urban Services announce in his presentation today that there will be $4 million more for footpaths.
In the Christmas spirit, I very much hope that those older suburbs—the inner suburbs—will be looked after. I know that there is sometimes a perception that many of the people living in those areas are especially wealthy, but I think that the footpaths there need special attention. I am thinking particularly of Forrest and Yarralumla. Many residents of those suburbs have raised this issue.
In fact, I can tell you that nearly 10 per cent of the entire adult population of Forrest has written to me raising issues related to deteriorating footpaths, poor lighting and guttering in particular. That is a significant number of people who have put pen to paper; it rarely happens these days.
Mr Hargreaves: Is that the survey?
MR MULCAHY: That was the survey; yes. The survey initiated letters; people were not just replying to questionnaires. I received three reports of individuals being assaulted in the area on their way home from Manuka in the evening. That is troubling. There is an