Page 51 - Week 01 - Tuesday, 7 December 2004

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MRS BURKE (Molonglo) (12.20): I will be brief, due to the constraints of time. Mr Speaker, I hold before me here the 25th anniversary edition of Contact, which, as members will know, is Canberra’s community information handbook. The concern I have—and I certainly commend Dr Foskey for her amendments to the motion before us today—is that there are 2,700 organisations in and around the ACT that provide community-oriented services. Contact does not include most for-profit organisations, which are readily available through the telephone directory, but it includes those 2,700 organisations.

I take Ms MacDonald’s point. Having been on the health committee with Ms MacDonald, we knew there were many issues that we wanted to pursue but could not. She said it herself. She picked herself up by saying there were things that we wanted to do throughout all of the committees in the last Assembly but which, because of the constraints of time and the enormous workload, we were unable to do. How on earth does axing a committee give us more opportunity to do that? Surely, there is a real point here in having that sixth committee. Mr Corbell said we can establish select committees, as we have the right to in this place. Why get rid of that sixth committee to put even more work pressure on the others?

I don’t really care about the make-up of the committee. Mostly, committees work well in this place—let’s have that said. Most committees work really well. But I am concerned about the inordinate amount of work now being placed on a compacted committee system that will not allow for the process, as Dr Foskey is foreshadowing in her motion. We are not going to be able to hear from all the community, and it is of grave concern. I will leave it there, but I understand that we have a motion on the notice paper later in the day, and I will make a comment at a later hour. Thank you.

Dr Foskey: I seek leave to speak again. It will be extremely brief.

Leave not granted.

Amendment negatived.

MR MULCAHY (Molonglo) (12.22): Mr Speaker, I seek leave to move an amendment.

Leave granted.

MR MULCAHY: I move the following amendment:

(1) Subparagraph (1)(f), omit “public works and”; and

(2) Subparagraph 1(a), insert new subparagraph:

“(v) examine matters relating to public works;”.

In relation to the amendment circulated in my name, there is a typographical error in Ms MacDonald’s name, which I draw to your attention. I will briefly outline my amendment. One of my early observations, both in the campaign and having subsequently been elected, has been the absence of a special committee on public works, which has existed in other parliaments in this country for some time. In the recent

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