Page 1723 - Week 06 - Tuesday, 3 May 2005

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and wellbeing of our children through increasing the opportunities to be physically active and help battle the increase of sedentary behaviours and levels of obesity.

Last year, this government implemented a kids at play program aimed at increasing opportunities for children to be active in an after-school setting, at community events and in the home. This commitment will be enhanced, with a further $100,000 in 2005-06 and $150,000 in the outyears, which doubles the capacity of this highly successful program.

Mr Speaker, the government will continue to ensure that our sporting infrastructure meets the needs of the community. The government is also mindful of the need to bring our community ovals up to an improved standard, particularly with a more secure water supply in the future.

This budget includes $770,000 in 2005-06, and $450,000 in the outyears, to ensure that the operational requirements of Manuka Oval are maintained. This will enable the territory to present a premier cricket and AFL venue that supports and attracts the major national codes. Mr Speaker, I am also pleased to announce that there will be a $1.7 million upgrade to Phillip Oval to restore it to a premier facility for the benefit of our local competitions.

Looking to future sporting events, I am also pleased to announce that $200,000 has been allocated to further develop the Lyneham/Southwell Park sporting precinct concept. Our focus will be to upgrade current sporting facilities, to identify the capacity to incorporate other users such as cycling, and to improve the community recreation amenities to enable greater community access.

Mr Speaker, Canberra adults are the most likely to engage in sporting activities compared with the rest of Australia, and the government’s investment reflects that fact.

Building our economic future

Mr Speaker, the year past has been a year of significant achievement for the Canberra business community. Business confidence among the territory’s small to medium enterprises is high in both local and national surveys, the export orientation of the territory SMEs is above national averages, and many of our firms are receiving accolades in the national business press.

The ACT’s trend unemployment rate of 3.4 per cent is the lowest on record and the lowest among all states and territories. Sustainable jobs, coupled with private sector development, are key measures of the government’s success.

The past 12 months have seen many actions of the economic white paper funded and implemented. The highlights of this rollout program include the knowledge fund, the export growth program, the appointment of a small business commissioner, the ANU/MTAA super venture capital partnership, the business springboard program, and the establishment of a one stop business shopfront.

I am pleased to announce that this year’s budget provides $232,000, increasing to $392,000 by 2008-09, to support a range of industry development activities across key industry sectors identified in the government’s economic white paper. This will include

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