Page 3490 - Week 09 - Thursday, 21 August 2008

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Planning for the delivery of the 2008-09 capital works program is already well underway. The government, through Procurement Solutions, is actively engaging industry and seeking to form partnerships and synergies with the private sector to coordinate the engagement of capital works providers to deliver this year’s program. The government has approached its capital works program in a planned and strategic manner. This government has a proven track record in delivery, with record expenditure and record commitments.

It is hard to reconcile this approach with the approach adopted by the previous government. Where was the previous government’s infrastructure plan? Nowhere. We have all heard the opposition’s unfunded promises to create an infrastructure commissioner, but what did they actually do when they were in government? What did they invest in? Where were the results of their efforts? It was a Liberal fiasco.

Bruce Stadium was a shambles from the start, with the project not properly scoped or funded. No-one will ever forget painting the grass green at Bruce—a Liberal fiasco. Their procurement process, budget blow-outs and an illegal overnight loan were also a long Liberal fiasco. There are many more examples of the previous government’s incompetence with capital works delivery. There was the hangar for the airline going out of business and the futsal slab—Liberal fiascos. It is clear that the Liberal government’s approach to infrastructure was nothing but ad hoc. They demonstrated no vision for the city, no commitment to the city and its suburbs, no idea about how to support the growth of the city and its families and no commitment to make the hard decisions that are necessary to fund much-needed infrastructure.

There is no comparison between this government’s proven track record in infrastructure planning and the delivery and appalling track record of the previous Liberal government—a fiasco. This government is committed to providing infrastructure for today and planning and delivering for the future. We are, and will continue to be, committed to providing quality services for all Canberrans.

MR SESELJA (Molonglo—Leader of the Opposition) (5.03): It is difficult to know where to start on this issue but I might start with some of Mr Gentleman’s comments in relation to the delivery of infrastructure. It did sound a bit like some of those Labor Party ads we have been hearing recently about the Labor Party’s record in office. I never quite know which ones I am hearing—whether I am hearing the government funded ones or the poker machine funded ones. But either way we have been hearing about the government’s wonderful record on infrastructure and on all sorts of issues.

I was struck by the quality of some of those Labor Party ads. Essentially the ads were saying: “Look, we have been a wonderful government. The real problem is that people do not appreciate how good a government they have.” That is the problem here. It is that we simply do not appreciate what a wonderful government we have been blessed with here in the territory—that the Stanhope government have been sensational but the problem is that the people have not heard about them: “If the people could just hear about the wonderful riches and treasures that have been bestowed upon them by this government, they would come flocking back to the Labor Party and overwhelmingly back them for another term of majority government, but that nasty opposition has stopped them from getting their message out.” Those ads are

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