Page 2800 - Week 09 - Wednesday, 17 August 2005

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boost patronage on the routes where it is used. That is an important value for money investment. That applies equally to the work we are doing on the Belconnen to city busway project and the Gungahlin to city busway project. Dedicated, high speed, rapid transit links between our town centres into the city centre are vital.

These investments can potentially save commuters significant amounts of time. For example, from Higgins into the city centre, with the Belconnen to city busway, there will be a 15-minute saving in journey time. That makes using the bus from Belconnen to the city competitive with a car in terms of the travel time, but, of course, it is without the hassle of parking. So that is a good example of the government following through on the key objectives, outcomes and priorities identified in the Canberra plan and its subset of plans, the spatial plan and the sustainable transport plan. So the government has a comprehensive program in place.

Now, I imagine that Mr Smyth is going to get up shortly and say that it was the Carnell government that delivered the first strategic plan for the city. If he is referring to the capital future document, he is really going to have to have another look because, quite frankly, it was nothing more than 50 or 60-page document that talked about what a great place Canberra was and how it could be a great place. It contained no objectives; no strategies; certainly no funding; certainly no implementation framework; certainly no looking up where the future urban growth and development of the city should occur; certainly no identifying in a comprehensive way how economic development should occur in the city and certainly no looking at human services, social service provision, equity and justice in our community. This government has delivered the first comprehensive strategic plan for our city. It is one that informs every action the government undertakes.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella—Leader of the Opposition) (11.24): For once Mr Corbell is right. I am going to refer to the Canberra: a capital future document. It is a strategic plan, but it is one of the plans that have been written about Canberra in the last 30 or so years. I am sure there are former workers of the NCDC who would be riled by the notion that they had never done the sort of work that Mr Corbell talks about. Of course all governments build on the works of the governments that come before them, but this government are the masters of rewriting history. Apparently nothing happened before this government appeared. All the grandeur that is Canberra suddenly appears out of the ground.

It was obvious from the motion on the notice paper that we were going to have all this commending and noting of what the government has done, but it is interesting that the mover of the motion could only take eight of the 15 minutes allotted to him to actually espouse his view of what has occurred. So most of the time we are begging. Then we had the dull delivery from the Chief Minister reciting the litany of his achievements. But what happens if you question them? Let us just question the necessity for the human rights legislation. It is lauded as the great achievement. Mr Stanhope wants to be the man who did everything first. One hundred and twenty people turned up to five or six consultations across the territory, and most of them were agin it. The point that Dr Foskey makes about this government’s sham of consultation is borne out by the fact that, when people speak against something, they are just ignored because “we know better”.

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