Page 1296 - Week 04 - Thursday, 10 April 2008

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MR BARR: Mr Speaker, the business case and the budget deliver the event. I am outlining what will occur at the event, which I think is entirely relevant.

MR SPEAKER: I think that is connected with the business case.

MR BARR: Thank you, Mr Speaker. They do not like hearing it. It seems that they are so opposed to a local organisation running this event. It is amazing—it really is. You really have to wonder what it is that someone at Balloon Aloft did—

Mrs Dunne: No. We’re in favour of good process; we’re in favour of government accountability.

MR BARR: Somebody at Balloon Aloft must have done something bad to you some time ago, because you have a remarkable vendetta against this organisation and against the local ballooning fraternity, it would seem.

On 21 and 22 April the theme is all about kids. Questacon will be holding four 20-minute science shows during the morning as well as a range of other fantastic children’s entertainment. On Wednesday the 23rd, for those who are fans of both kinds of music—that is, country and western—you can slap on a cowboy hat and enjoy some great live entertainment. Thursday the 24th is the mass ascension of hot air balloons, which is part of the Olympic torch relay celebrations. There is a free community breakfast and you can view a range of other activities occurring on that day. Friday the 25th is, of course, Anzac Day. It is an opportunity to respect the fallen and celebrate the Australian spirit. There will be a two-up demonstration, I understand, and a range of other things in accordance with Anzac Day.

The 26th is the second weekend of the nine-day event. It begins on a classical note. String music will echo off the lake as balloons gently drift over. It will be a very pleasant and relaxing way to spend a Saturday morning. The festival will finish on 27 April with a celebration of the multicultural community in Canberra, an international day.

The question must be asked: what is it about this event that the Liberal Party so opposes? What is it about the local ballooning fraternity and all of those activities supporting local companies, local businesses, local media outlets? It is a great event for the ACT. We know that the Liberal Party cannot give up its grudge against this. Even Paul Gibbs, the chairman of the former operator, is flying a balloon in this event. He is big enough and generous enough to participate in this event. But not Mr Smyth. He and the Liberal Party cannot bring themselves out of their muckraking, out of their usual negativity towards all positive events in the ACT. (Time expired.)

Public housing—Fraser Court

MR MULCAHY: My question is to the Minister for Housing. Minister, last week I welcomed your announcement that the government had decided to sell Fraser Court. I was also pleased to hear your comments on radio that the government had moved away from and would not be building any more large-scale public housing complexes

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