Page 3287 - Week 10 - Thursday, 25 August 2005

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During this period the Canberra-based engineering motor sports team has grown to eight full-time personnel. Neal Bates has provided exciting employment opportunities for young people from Canberra and regional areas, including Bega, and an apprentice who graduated from Wodonga TAFE. The hard work, dedication and innovation displayed by TTR has not gone unnoticed. Canberra’s own Toyota Team Racing is a finalist in the Engineers Australia engineering excellence award in the small business venture projects section.

The engineering excellence award seeks to recognise and reward outstanding achievement, eminence in the practice of engineering and conspicuous service to the engineering profession. For TTR to have been nominated is in itself a great accomplishment. To have been selected as a finalist is exceptional, especially considering that the nomination of TTR was a covert operation, with owner Neal Bates knowing nothing of it. Keenly aware of Neal’s modesty, his close friends nominated TTR on the sly. When the awards judges came to inspect Toyota Team Racing’s workshop they were introduced to Neal and the team simply as car enthusiasts. The plan came unstuck later when the time came to convince Neal to don a black tie for a night away in Sydney.

Such national and international recognition can only advance Canberra as the knowledge capital of Australia. I am proud to have been involved in a sport that encouraged such a manufacturing success right here in our own backyard. Further, Toyota Team Racing is a success that has raised employment opportunities for constituents in my own electorate of Brindabella and raised the profile of Canberrans as a whole in this world-famous sport.

I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate our Canberran team of Neal, Coral, Steve, Geoff, Mark, Chris, Jay, Matthew, Anthony, Trent and Anthony again for their achievements in the field of engineering. I wish Toyota Team Racing the best of luck for November, when the winner of the Engineers Australia engineering excellence award is announced. I also wish them well for the remainder of the 2005 World Rally Championship and in any future endeavour this remarkable team embarks upon.

Youth detention centres

MR SESELJA (Molonglo) (5.36): On Tuesday I was honoured to be the subject of a dorothy dixer from Ms MacDonald to Ms Gallagher. I note that Ms Gallagher has been speaking a lot about me lately and I am certainly flattered. I am very happy that she spends so much time reading my press releases. In answer to the question, Ms Gallagher said:

Youth detention centres are not prisons and their residents are not inmates. Whilst punishment is a factor of their operation, their overriding purpose is rehabilitation to ensure that young residents do not find themselves in prisons later in life. I have enormous concerns about Mr Seselja’s rhetoric on this issue. I hope that it is due to his inexperience and not choosing his words carefully.

I certainly thank Ms Gallagher for her advice. I do choose my words carefully. She may wish to check the meaning of words herself before going off half-cocked. I note her struggle to understand the word “consult”. I think that, when you accuse someone of

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