Page 2298 - Week 07 - Thursday, 23 June 2005

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(2) If the government did not pay for the Functions Coordinator’s Hong Kong accommodation, why then does the Functions Coordinator’s Travel Form have the Hong Kong accommodation listed as official “accommodation booked with rest of delegation” along with the Royal Horse Guards in London and the Hanover International in Cardiff;

(3) Why was the Functions Coordinator permitted to take leave during official travel when Chief Minister’s Department Travel Guideline 19 only permits leave directly before or directly after official travel;

(4) Who approved this leave;

(5) Why was there no information relating to this leave on the Functions Coordinator’s Travel Form as required by Guideline 19;

(6) Did the Functions Coordinator’s travel insurance which was paid for by the government and arranged by the ACT Insurance Authority, provide coverage for her stay in Hong Kong.

Mr Stanhope: The answer to the member’s question is as follows:

(1) This question has been answered previously. The Functions Coordinator’s accommodation expenses in Hong Kong were not ever paid for by the Chief Minister’s Department. The officer concerned made her own accommodation reservations and payments for Hong Kong. The itinerary you are referring to (15872406) was a consolidated itinerary of the officer’s complete travel arrangements.

(2) Information regarding the accommodation for Hong Kong was recorded on the travel form for the information of the Functions Coordinator’s supervisors.

(3) As previously stated the day’s ‘leave’ was directly before the Functions Coordinator’s official travel commenced (in line with the Guidelines). It was also a consequence of the fact that the Functions Coordinator does not work full time. The days ‘leave’ was a consolidation of her unpaid time for the duration of her travel i.e. the Functions Coordinator was not actually paid salary for the day she spent in Hong Kong – a situation which may be compared with the two week honeymoon leave taken by the Leader of the Opposition on his 2004 taxpayer funded trip to India.

(4) Manager, Chief Minister’s Support & Protocol.

(5) See (3) above.

(6) Information received from the ACT Government’s Insurance Authority, was that private travel insurance was not available for one day therefore it has been policy over the years that the ACT Insurance Authority provides coverage for that period.

Canberra Hospital—psychiatric unit
(Question No 351)

Mr Smyth asked the Minister for Health, upon notice, on 5 April 2005:

(1) How many beds are currently available at the Psychiatric Unit (PSU) at The Canberra Hospital;

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