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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 01 Hansard (Wednesday, 13 February 2008) . . Page.. 169 ..

community feedback, we are building a multistorey car park at a cost of around $29 million. The decision about whether or not there will be pay parking at the Canberra Hospital in the future is one that I presume the next government—and I presume it will be this one, when we are re-elected—will make at the time the multistorey car park is finished.

Mr Smyth: You’re very cocky.

MS GALLAGHER: It won’t be you guys if you keep up this question time strategy.

Emergency services—FireLink

MR PRATT: My question is to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Mr Corbell. Minister, yesterday during question time the Chief Minister said we could take the word of the minister “publicly expressed, on the public record, as expressing the government’s position”. Minister, on 12 December 2006 in this place you publicly expressed on the public record the government’s position in relation to FireLink:

FireLink does work. It is operational currently in RFS and SES.

Mr Stanhope: Who’s the political genius that dreamt those questions up?

Ms Gallagher: The mastermind?

Mr Stanhope: Yes; who’s the political mastermind who dreamt this up?

MR SPEAKER: Chief Minister, order!

MR PRATT: Just listen, Chief Minister; you might get a lesson here about consistency. I will just repeat that:

FireLink does work. It is operational currently in RFS and SES. It does work and it is an excellent piece of technology.

Your government, minister, dumped this “excellent piece of technology” not seven months later. Minister, how do you reconcile your statement of your government’s position expressed, on the record, with your government’s subsequent decision to dump FireLink?

MR CORBELL: It is quite an amazing revelation that we have from those opposite that they seem to fail to understand that there is the capacity in most human minds to absorb new information and respond to it. In most human minds, when you are presented with a range of facts you make a decision based on that range of facts, and then if you are presented with further facts you revisit that decision and decide whether or not it is still an appropriate decision. Mr Speaker, that is what ministers do. I hate to break it to Mr Pratt, but once you say something it does not mean it is always true for ever and a day. If new facts come to light, you have to revisit things, you have to reassess, and that is the sign, I would have thought, of an individual who is prepared to think, to assess, to analyse and to be critical in their decision making.

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