Page 4970 - Week 15 - Thursday, 15 December 2005

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I have actually toughened up and taken off the Pollyanna glasses. All I can say is: watch out next year.

I want to thank those who decided to help me in my toughening up process during the estimates process. It was enjoyable and challenging. As you all know, I am the Jew girl, so I will not pass on Christmas wishes to the Assembly. Instead I will wish you all a happy Hanukkah, and also the best for 2006. In the Jewish religion it is not the season for children to give to parents; it is the season in which parents give their children presents. We do not, as such, give presents to each other, but I will endeavour to pretend that you are all children. I am sure, Mr Speaker, that you will have no trouble in imagining this to be the case. As such, I present you all with a dreidel. Do not ask me for the rules of the game because I cannot remember. It has been a long time. Have fun with the dreidel!


MR STANHOPE (Ginninderra—Chief Minister, Attorney-General, Minister for the Environment and Minister for Arts, Heritage and Indigenous Affairs) (5.47): I would like to take the opportunity on this adjournment debate of the last day of the sitting year to extend my best wishes to all within the Assembly, all indeed within the Canberra community for a safe and happy holiday and Christmas season and a good 2006. I would like most particularly to thank my colleagues, the members of the government. I would like particularly to thank and acknowledge each and all of my colleagues individually for the role which each of you play in the government of the ACT.

I am very pleased with the performance of the government over this last year. I think it is a credit to the hard work and diligence of the team that comprises and constitutes the government. I often reflect on the fact that the burden of government within the territory falls on the shoulders of essentially nine people and I acknowledge the role that each of the nine of us who are the government of the ACT play in the many functions which we perform to govern this territory. I acknowledge the enormous hard work and the commitment and each and every one of the nine members of the government in producing good government for the ACT.

I must say that it is my personal view, 12 months after the achievement of majority government within the ACT—and I thank my colleagues for this—that we as a government are in a stronger position now than we were 12 month ago, and I thank each of you for that. Thank you very much.

I also acknowledge, of course, the role that the opposition plays, and I thank them for that. The strength of a government is, of course, reflected by the strength of the opposition and the way in which the parliament performs. I wish each member of the opposition a happy holiday season, a happy Christmas and a successful 2006.

I would also like most particularly to thank each and every member of the Legislative Assembly. I will not name them individually. Each of us would acknowledge that the strength of this democracy and of this parliament is a reflection of the work and diligence of each member of the staff of Legislative Assembly. I acknowledge and thank each of you for the enormous amount of work that you do.

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