Page 1772 - Week 06 - Wednesday, 4 May 2005

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treasury forum. But we were advised only afterwards and, quite frankly, I did not see any point in writing off to Peter Costello and saying, “Oh, Peter, John Brumby has used the wrong figures in the table attached because they worked them out their way.”

With some of the numbers that are in those figures there is a gross amount that you lose and then those numbers that we lose in taxation revenue fold back into the machinations of the grants commission, so that when you are trying to estimate what the ACT will lose, or not, there will be a gross and a net figure. There will be an original figure and, for some states, what they lose might actually grow somewhat. For us, it is probable that it will decrease because the balance of taxation collection is changed as between the states. Therefore, the relativities between the states have changed and the net numbers will be different from the actual gross numbers in the tax.

I do not have the numbers in my head, and I apologise for that, but there is a difference for us in some of the taxes between the actual money that will be forgone, initially in tax collection, versus the ultimate impact on us as estimated—members know that the grants commission process is very complex—by the grants commission. The impact on some of them is likely to be a bit less.

Police recruitment

MR PRATT: My question is directed to the minister for police, Mr Hargreaves. By the way, congratulations minister on arresting a graffiti offender. Now to the question: over the weekend you announced the recruitment of 20 new police for the ACT over a period of two years. Added to the 20 police you have announced in the budget, this now means you are committed to 40 new police over five years.

As we do not have the training budget and need to wait two years apparently to recruit and train these first 20 police, why are you not undertaking a significant number of lateral recruitments concurrently? Why are you not prepared to rectify your abysmal position on our woefully under-strength police by laterally recruiting as well?

MR HARGREAVES: As Mr Pratt would know—he has gone out and had a free glass of wine at the training centre and he would have seen the recruitment process—we do recruit laterally. That is happening, in case you have not awoken to that. Mr Pratt might know—after all, this man spent a lot of time in uniform—that you have to put people through a recruitment training course as well.

It is time Mr Pratt was given a little history of the evolution of police numbers in this town. He is quite right: the Stanhope government is putting in 40 extra police officers over five years. In the budget, $1.1 million was allocated for 10 sworn police officers to patrol the north district covering Canberra city, Belconnen and Gungahlin taking effect from 1 July 2007.

After that, another $1.1 million will be available from 1 July 2008, allowing for the second patrol of 10 sworn officers to be allocated to south district, covering south Canberra, Woden and Tuggeranong. These new patrols are in addition to the 20 extra police committed in the 2004-05 budget, 10 of which will be coming on stream from 1 July 2005. The overall effect is an increase of 40 sworn police, full-time equivalents, between 2004-05 and 2008-09.

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